home of the singing waitstaff
Ellen's Stardust Diner is a retro 1950s theme restaurant located at 1650 Broadway on the southeast corner of 51st Street in Theater District, Manhattan, New York City. The diner is regarded as one of the best theme restaurants in New York owing to its singing waitstaff. The diner also contains retro-themed memorabilia such as photos of many past Miss Subways on the walls, an indoor train, a 1956 Predicta television, and a “drive-in theater” screen that showcases performances of the 1950s. It is popular among children and adults.
Ellen's Stardust Diner was opened in 1987 after Ellen's Cafe was closed down. It was the first 1950s themed restaurant in New York City and had waitresses in poodle skirts. In the late 1990s, a sister restaurant operated near Times Square under the name Stardust Dine-O-Mat.
In Popular Culture
Ellen's Stardust Diner was the site in the movie New Year's Eve where Sarah Jessica Parker’s character and her 15-year-old daughter's friends stopped for a bite after the ball dropped. It was also featured in American Idol when a former employee, Devyn Rush, became a contestant on the show. Reports subsequently followed regarding Devyn's employment status at Ellen's Stardust Diner. Ellen's Diner was also featured on a Today Show episode
Alumni on Broadway
Several alums of Ellen's Stardust Diner singing waitstaff have gone on to have successful careers on Broadway theatre and American Idol. Many current staffers have received critical acclaim with original musicals at NY Musical Theater Festival. Brandon Ellis, Eric Michael Krop, Stephen Tyler Davis, and Alysha Umphress (Shirley) are some of the successful singers who had started their careers as singing wait-staffers at Ellen's Stardust Diner. Ellen's Stardust Diner is considered a breeding ground for singers. Former Ellen's staff members have been known to star in almost every Broadway and major off-Broadway musical such as Avenue Q, Jersey Boys, The Lion King, South Pacific, In The Heights, On The Town, Wicked, and Godspell.
Ellen marries Entrepreneur, Iriving Sturm
Ellen's Stardust Diner opens on 51st and Broadway
Monica Geller works as a chef at the Iridium on the first two seasons of "Friends"..
August 1, 2001
The Iridium moved to its current location at 1650 Broadway on 51st Street
Ellen Hart Becomes "Miss Subway"
The original Ellen's Cafe opens with the original location across from City Hall.
The Iridium Jazz Club opens its original location on 63rd Street and 8th Avenue
April 23, 2001
Paul McCartney joins Les Paul on stage at the Iridium
Ellen's Stardust Diner is a featured film location in the movie "New Year's Eve", starring Sarah Jessica Parker.