B.O. soars; ‘Light’ 545g

Broadway grosses

NEW YORK — The Tony telecast may have tanked in the ratings, but Broadway enjoyed its Tony bounce much more than usual. The $1,304,421 uptick was at least double the post-awards increase of the past two years.

In Week 2 (June 6-12), 35 shows brought in a record $18,335,860, up from $15.54 million in 2004 and $11.08 million in 2003. Two years ago, paid attendance came to a meager 164,363, compared with Week 2’s huge 266,851.

Almost all shows were up, with the exception of “The Phantom of the Opera” ($753,204), “Rent” ($320,119), “Brooklyn” ($188,475), “After the Night and the Music” ($157,061) and “Jackie Mason: Freshly Squeezed” ($88,030).

Boffo is the best word for Billy Crystal’s final week in “700 Sundays” ($846,635), which rose $349,006 on the back of two more perfs — after four the previous week — and an astronomical $119.13 average price ticket. Crystal had been averaging about $105 a ticket for most of the run.

Denzel Washington also said good-bye to Broadway, with “Julius Caesar” ($699,180) up $24,795 and nearly, but not quite, getting more per ticket than “Wicked” ($1,265,536), which continued to average a lofty $87.45. The Bard came in third with $86.74.

House records were set by “Julius Caesar” at the Belasco, “Doubt” ($539,123) at the Walter Kerr and “Monty Python’s Spamalot” ($960,871) at the Shubert.

But the week’s biggest prize — a huge $90,457 increase — went to “The Light in the Piazza” ($544,820), which played to 95.1% capacity on the strength of its six Tony wins.

Tony winner “The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee” ($405,043), up $21,240, saw its best week to date and played to 99% capacity.

The 21 musicals grossed $13,636,343 for 74.4% of the Broadway total, with attendance of 197,146 at 83.2% of capacity.

The 14 plays grossed $4,699,517 for 25.6% of the Broadway total, with attendance of 62,705 at 71.2% of capacity.

Average ticket prices were $69.17 for musicals, $67.42 for plays and $68.71 for all shows.

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