It must have been a great week for Netflix and HBO. Broadway ticket sales dropped $4.6 million from the previous frame for the week ending Sunday. Big shows saw falloffs in the hundreds of thousands of dollars: Disney’s The Lion King and Aladdin together were down just shy of $800K, Wicked was off $442K, and Matilda was down $336K. The Elisabeth Moss-led revival of The Heidi Chronicles got off to a sluggish start, taking in $305K for eight previews at the Music Box Theatre, about one-third of its gross potential, with an average ticket price of $51.05. While known and loved by theater cognoscenti, the dramedy will need great reviews and strong word-of-mouth for a cast that includes Jason Biggs and Bryce Pinkham in Wendy Wasserstein’s Pulitzer winner. The show opens March 19.
The other star-driven previewers are doing just fine: Helen Mirren in The Audience was 6.7% over her gross potential, taking in $1.09 million at the Schoenfeld and slightly above capacity (100.4% or 7,512 people) for seven previews. The play opens Sunday. Larry David’s Fish In The Dark, opening Thursday at the Cort, took in $1.16 million and played to full houses for eight previews. On The Twentieth Century, the musical revival presented by the nonprofit Roundabout Theatre Company and starring Kristin Chenoweth and Peter Gallagher, was actually up a bit, to $377K for eight performances at the American Airlines. The revival of the Cy Coleman/Betty Comden & Adolph Green musical opens March 15.
Receipts for Week 40 of the season totaled $18.6 million for 26 shows, down from $23.2 million the week before according to figures released by the trade group Broadway League. However, attendance for the season to date is up about 1.1 million over the year before, to 9.9 million.