‘Wings,’ ‘Together’ set house records

B'Way B.O. improves, 'Lion King,' 'Fosse' sellout

Two new shows set house records: Still in previews, “Waiting in the Wings” took in $425,923 at the Eugene O’Neill, beating the old record ($367,938 in 1998) set by “The Beauty Queen of Leenane.” And with a grand $474,747, “Putting It Together” at the Ethel Barrymore laid to rest the best week ($441,776 in 1997) in the history of “The Life.”

Nearly all 32 shows on Broadway improved, nearing tallies set two weeks ago during the Thanksgiving tourist splurge. Those shows that incurred downturns registered negligible dips: “Chicago,” down $949; “Lion King,” minus $3,846; “The Rainmaker,” missing $3,031; and “Tango Argentino,” dropping $6,566.

Two other shows took more dramatic slides, but for good reason: “Swing!” opened, playing a split week of heavily comped previews and regular performances. Total receipts: $305,070, down $13,025 from previous session, with a gross potential of $782,586. Jackie Mason got a cold and missed two nights, which took a $78,342 toll. He ended up with a final $79,968. G.p. is $179,815.

“Epic Proportions” cashed in with its lowest week ever — $63,149 — and posted a closing notice of Dec. 12, which its producers just as quickly withdrew. A spokesman for the show said the comedy would close either Sunday or Jan. 2.

The gains ran the gamut, from a plus $556 for “Saturday Night Fever” to $86,986 for “The Phantom of the Opera.”

In between were “Kiss Me, Kate,” which kicked up $12,002 more to close at $648,044, its gross potential is $771,039; “Marie Christine,” which registered a $672 blip, capturing a final $300,959 out of a possible $518,555; and “The Price,” which rose $4,842 to finish with $160,425, its g.p. is $446,768. Average tickets for the three new shows were $59.42, $45.03 and $35.43, respectively.

“Minnelli on Minnelli,” playing one heavily comped preview and four regular performances, improved $69,433 over previous session of four previews. Total tally stood at $504,713. Its average ticket ($68.84) was the third highest on Broadway, topped only by “Cabaret” ($71.75) and “Fosse” ($69.05), with “Saturday Night Fever” ($67.39) in fourth place.

In addition to “The Lion King,” the sellouts were “Fosse” and “Putting It Together.”

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