The Inside Scoop
FROM THE KNOT EDITORS
The First Look
The Bushnell Center for the Performing Arts has been a part of the Hartford, Connecticut, community since 1930 when Dotha Bushnell Hillyer built it as a tribute to her late father, the Reverend Dr. Horace Bushnell. Over the years, it has grown and today, it stands as a landmark for the citizens of Hartford.
In addition to the amazing performances held at The Bushnell Center for the Performing Arts, it's also a popular spot for couples to hold their wedding ceremony and reception. The facility offers numerous spaces from which brides and grooms can choose.
William H. Mortensen Hall. This is the largest event space available at The Bushnell Center for the Performing Arts. It holds up to 2,799 people in all, but the stage only holds 200 guests seated with a dance floor, 250 guests seated without dancing or 375 people for a cocktail reception. The Mortensen Hall features a chic art deco interior with incredible lighting and state-of-the-art audio equipment. It has been the spot for many shows throughout the years, including national touring Broadway shows.
Maxwell M. & Ruth R. Belding Theater. This theater offers space for up to 908 seated guests. It can hold 200 people for dinner and dancing, 250 for a seated reception or 350 guests for a standing reception. It's designed with a "Music of Spheres" ceiling mural and rich wood accents throughout. The Maxwell M. & Ruth R. Belding Theater has hosted guests like The Piano Guys and Matthew Morrison and it's also the home of the Hartford Symphony Orchestra's Masterworks Series.
Autorino Great Hall. This spacious hall provides enough room for up to 200 seated guests for a reception dinner, 136 for dinner and dancing or up to 275 standing guests. This dramatic space features a 35-foot vaulted ceiling and is completely enclosed in glass. It also has a veranda that offers views of the courtyard.
Seaverns Room. This room is large enough to hold 60 people for dinner and dancing, 90 for a seated dinner only or up to 200 guests for a cocktail-style reception. The space features elegant and traditional touches, including hand-carved wood walls and stunning chandeliers.
Horace Bushnell Suite. This area works well for a small, intimate gathering. It holds up to 38 seated guests or 50 standing guests and overlooks the Autorino Great Hall.
Hillyer Suite. This is a great space to use as a bridal suite. It's large enough to hold 40 people and is very close to the theater venues.
Mortensen Lobbies and Belding Theater Lobby. Both are ideal for a cocktail reception or cocktail hour prior to a reception in one of the larger venues. Mortensen Lobbies holds up to 850 standing guests or 250 seated guests. It features limestone walls and classy black-and-white marble floors. Belding Theater Lobby overlooks the courtyard and grand staircase. It seats up to 60 guests and can hold up to 150 people standing.
What You Should Know
The Bushnell Center for Performing Arts offers professional event planning and in-house catering through Max's Catering. This exclusive caterer offers a large variety of custom meals from which to choose. Couples can select from light hors d'oeuvres, special chef stations and formal sit-down dinner options. Outside food is not allowed but the facility does allow a wedding cake to be brought in for the reception. Some event items are available at the facility for couples to use, such as tables, chairs, drapery and linens.
Bar services are offered and include cash bar or open bar, including a variety of beer, liquor, wine and champagne. Audiovisual support is accessible through the venue's experienced staff. Valet parking services are sometimes available and there is also secure and public parking options around the theaters.
The Bushnell Center for the Performing Arts is located near the following attractions:
- Hartford History Center
- Bushnell Park and Carousel
- Wadsworth Museum
From the Vendor
The Event of Your Lifetime
The Bushnell is the perfect place when you are the star of the show. The spaces throughout The Bushnell offer a unique and memorable environment for weddings, bar/bat mitzvahs, corporate meetings and more. Our professional staff stands ready to "WOW" you and your guests.
Amenities + Details
For more details about amenities, please message the Venue.
$$$ – Moderate
Food + Catering, Planning, Rentals + Equipment, Service Staff
wedding reception locationReviewed on 7/16/2013 Nicole G
amazing space, beautiful attention to detail. even better staff and help. would HIGHLY recommend.
Wonderful Location for a WeddingReviewed on 9/19/2012 Jessica G
I had a wonderful experience having my wedding at the Bushnell. The space is beautiful, the people go way above and beyond to make everything run perfectly and the food is amazing. I received so many complements from the guests.