'Les Miz' takes French dip
The daylight-saving clock change caused its usual decline in Broadway sales last week, with the Oct. 29 switchover spurring box office dips for most shows on the boards during the week ended Sunday.
Legiters don’t know exactly why the time change adversely affects grosses, but, like clockwork, it happens every year.
The newly returned “Les Miserables” ($559,205 for seven perfs) saw the biggest dip of the week, sliding by more than $135,000 in its second frame on the boards. Diminished returns could suggest flagging interest in the revival of “Les Miz” just three years after its original, long-running Rialto incarnation closed. Critics have their chance to affect sales one way or the other when the new production opens Thursday.
On the other hand, producer Cameron Mackintosh’s other new Rialto show, his co-production of “Mary Poppins” ($866,182) with Disney Theatrical, climbed in its first seven-performance week, and claimed the No. 5 spot — thanks in part to drops of more than $100,000 each from “The Drowsy Chaperone” ($862,819), “The Color Purple” ($825,866) and “Monty Python’s Spamalot” ($811,840).
Meanwhile, “Dr. Seuss’ How the Grinch Stole Christmas” ($687,171) stole a spot in the top 10, climbing by almost $220,000 in its second week on the boards (during which it played 11 perfs). Will sales continue to rise as the titular holiday approaches?
Below the top 10, it was too soon for the raves won by lead thesp Christine Ebersole to register much at the box office for “Grey Gardens” ($390,959). That show was down a bit in its comp-heavy opening week.
“The Producers” ($499,210) fell below $500,000 again, and “The Wedding Singer” ($375,146), which recently announced it would close at the end of the year, sank by around $120,000.
The critically battered “The Times They Are A-Changin’ ” ($319,070) held steady, while “Butley” ($368,709) climbed a bit. “The Little Dog Laughed” ($152,748) was sparsely attended but nonetheless rose a little.
And joining the fray was “Company” ($396,815), playing to crowds of 70% capacity during its first week of perfs.
Total receipts for 31 shows on the boards were $17,372,991, down about $350,000 from the prior sesh.