January chill gets colder on Broadway

Rialto's annual post-holiday doldrums continue

New York — Just when Broadway sales were looking down, they managed to slide a little lower in week 35 (Jan. 18-24).

Individual productions across the board logged box office dips of varying sizes in the latest edition of the Rialto’s annual post-holiday doldrums, with some dropping as much as 25% from the prior frame. Total sales slid $3.3 million to $14.2 million for 23 shows on the boards.

Several productions pulled in unusually low numbers given their previous track records, including “South Pacific” ($582,061) and “Hair” (“$524,882), two successful revivals whose steadily robust biz has begun to waver recently.

“A View From the Bridge” ($537,078) was down during a week that accommodated press previews and the opening night perf, but those receipts seem likely to pick up now that reviews for the show, which opened Sunday, have proved strong. New play “Race” ($479,594) also was down, but seemed relatively solid compared with “God of Carnage” ($395,140), dipping below the $400,000 mark for the first time in months.

“In the Heights” ($493,716) also fell by a hefty chunk, although that show hopes to gain steam again when “High School Musical” star Corbin Bleu steps in this week.

“Bye Bye Birdie” ($533,658), which closed last week, missed out on a last-minute sales spike, remaining about on par with the previous sesh.

Although the season cume ($692.2 million) has now surpassed last season’s at this time ($689.6 million), it’s worth pointing out that cumulative attendance is lagging, with this year’s 7.9 million trailing last season’s 8.2 million, and that producers have opted to report only gross gross figures, whereas last year’s figures are net gross.

The 18 musicals grossed $12,389,140 for 86.8% of the Broadway total, with an attendance of 145,073 at 76.1% capacity and average paid admission of $85.40. The eight plays grossed $1,880,226 for 13.2% of the Broadway total, with an attendance of 29,567 at 80.3 capacity and average paid admission of $63.59.

Average paid admission was $81.71 for all shows.

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