Great White Way suffers post-holiday slump

The post-holiday slide snowballed into an avalanche last week, with total Broadway grosses dropping around $2.5 million to $14.8 million.

Except for the strong-selling “Coast of Utopia” ($299,449 for four perfs) and Manhattan Theater Club’s previewing “Translations” ($182,632), every single on of the 27 offerings on the boards saw a dip in sales. And some of those dips were worryingly large.

“The Color Purple,” for instance, plummeted nearly $250,000 to $481,854, drawing just 51% of capacity. Two other tuners from last season, “The Drowsy Chaperone” ($669,889) and “Tarzan” ($472,524), also saw sizable drops in receipts.

Long-runners felt the chill, too, as they usually do when tourists trickle away from the city. “The Lion King” ($864,047), “Beauty and the Beast” ($468,724), “Hairspray” ($425,894) and “Rent” ($297,156) were among the perennials to fall off at the box office.

Meanwhile, “Mary Poppins” ($1,043,950) is maintaining its holiday momentum, hanging on to the third-place slot behind “Wicked” ($1,365,614) and “Jersey Boys” ($1,172,292).

Also staying strong is “Spring Awakening” ($469,786), which saw only a slight dip of about $10,000. Fellow arthouse tuner “Grey Gardens” ($427,032) fell by around $40,000.

Among the plays, things looked good for “Utopia,” but “The Vertical Hour” ($382,042) played to 64% capacity and “The Little Dog Laughed” ($193,849), which shutters next month, was down to 47%.

Overall, though, Broadway came out a little ahead of the same frame last year, when sales dipped to approximately $14.2 million.

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