Broadway Box Office Springs To $40M With ‘Tootsie’, ‘Hadestown’, ‘Burn This’

Julieta Cervantes

Spring tourism and a plump roster of new productions filled lots of seats on Broadway last week, with attendance of 328,200 reflecting a solid 8% increase over the previous week. Total revenue for Week 47 (ending April 21) was even more impressive as the 36 productions took in $40,219,790, 16% greater than the previous week.

But strong competition among the newcomers, press comps and opening night freebies kept ticket prices for some shows at modest levels. Expect some settling into position over the next couple weeks, not to mention bumps (or not) from the around-the-corner Tony Award nominations on April 30.

Let’s take them in opening night order:

  • Burn This, starring Adam Driver and Keri Russell in the Lanford Wilson revival at the Hudson, has few empty seats these nights, with Driver’s quotable reviews following the April 16 opening doing whatever lifting still needed doing – the duo’s star power has been drawing audiences for weeks. With two previews and six regular performances, Burn This grossed $768,766;
  • Hadestown was SRO at the Kerr, with receipts tallying up to $776,253 for two previews, six perfs including the April 17 opening night;
  • Hillary and Clinton, starring Laurie Metcalf and John Lithgow opened April 18, with 97% of the Golden’s seats filled. Receipts for the three previews and five regulars totaled $340,825, about 42% of potential;
  • Gary: A Sequel To Titus Andronicus opened at the Booth on April 21 to reviews more mixed than they should have been. Taylor Mac’s comedy starring Nathan Lane and Kristine Nielsen grossed $300,613, about 35% of potential for seven previews and the opening night. Seats were filled – 98% of them anyway – but the comps and maybe some pre-opening confusion about what, exactly, this Gary thing is all about kept average ticket price at 50 bucks;
  • All My Sons, the nonprofit Roundabout’s Arthur Miller revival starring Annette Bening, Tracy Letts and Benjamin Walker at the American Airlines Theatre, opens tonight; the final full week of previews took in $482,132, about 60% of potential, with attendance at 96% of capacity;
  • Tootsie, opening April 23 at the Marquis, was at 96% of capacity, grossing $907,612 for 54% of potential (again, opening night comps played a part);
  • Ink, the British import about the early Fleet Street days of Rupert Murdoch, opens April 24 at the Samuel J. Friedman Theatre, and like some of its fellow newcomers, showed sturdier attendance (92% of capacity) than box office: $316,263, about 44% of potential;
  • And finally Beetlejuice, opening April 25 at the Winter Garden, grossed $797,929, a more than decent 68% of potential for the seven previews. Attendance of 10,375 was just a shade below sell-out.

A couple other notables:

  • Harry Potter and the Cursed Child had its one-year Broadway birthday today, and the magic shows no signs of letting up, new cast and all: The highest grossing play in Broadway history took in $2,021,091;
  • Ain’t Too Proud, the Temptations jukebox musical, is another powerhouse, grossing $1,396,582 at the Imperial.

The week’s sell-outs – or close enough, with attendance at 98% of capacity or more – were Ain’t Too Proud, Aladdin, Beetlejuice, Burn This, Chicago, Come From Away, Dear Evan Hansen, Frozen, Gary: A Sequel To Titus Andronicus, Hadestown, Hamilton, Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, Kiss Me Kate, Mean Girls, Network, Oklahoma!, The Book of Mormon, The Lion King, To Kill a Mockingbird, What The Constitution Means To Me and Wicked.

Season to date, Broadway has grossed $1,649,156,032, about 12% better year to year. Attendance of 13,213,039 was up 11% over last year at this time.

All figures courtesy of the trade group Broadway League.

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