Box office boost on Broadway

Sales up on eve of Tony nominations

Broadway box office began to heat up last week, with total receipts climbing more than $600,000 to $20.15 million.

Late May usually sees a pickup in Rialto sales, as auds are prodded by the legit awards frenzy, which really kicks into high gear with the Tony noms today.

One production racking up a slew of awards, “The Coast of Utopia” ($539,968), won’t be around to reap the B.O. benefits: The Lincoln Center Theater production wrapped its limited engagement May 13, playing to crowds at 92% capacity.

The other award fave, tuner “Spring Awakening” ($450,097), could use a little kudos fever to bring in larger auds than the 67% capacity last week, which saw grosses rise by not quite $30,000.

Still, it’s a couple of awards-magnet revivals that need trophy buzz the most: “Company” ($233,902) rose only marginally, and things look dire at “Journey’s End” ($89,590), playing to houses less than a quarter full.

The majority of the 36 productions on the boards saw increases this week, with the largest bump going to Fantasia-fueled “The Color Purple” ($1,020,793), propelled by more than $130,000 into the week’s millionaires’ club.

Nice jumps in the high-five figures went to “Mary Poppins” ($1,103,779), a momentum-building “Legally Blonde” ($840,383) and “110 in the Shade” ($293,314). “Shade,” which opened last week, was back to a full production sked after the cancellation of three perfs the prior sesh.

Among plays, “Radio Golf” ($184,370) managed to climb by nearly $50,000 despite losing the take from a comp-heavy opening perf last week. Other nontuners on the rise were “Frost/Nixon” ($446,776), “Inherit the Wind” ($429,206) and “Talk Radio” ($221,789), along with “Deuce” ($426,531) and “Coram Boy” ($277,421), coming off their opening weeks.

Only a handful of shows dipped at the box office, among them were “The Phantom of the Opera” ($676,802), down by around $75,000, and “The Drowsy Chaperone” ($575,711), off by more than $60,000.

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