Most shows slip in pre-holiday frame
Most Broadway shows saw sales slip last week. And then there was Hugh Jackman.
Boosted by star power and critical raves, the performer’s concert outing “Hugh Jackman, Back on Broadway” ($1,468,189) has seen demand for tickets reach a fervor similar to “The Book of Mormon” ($1,367,805) — as measurable by the average price paid per tickets, which approached $153 for “Jackman,” just behind $156 for “Mormon.”
Across the street from Jackman, Harry Connick Jr. starrer “On a Clear Day You Can See Forever” may not be hitting the same heights, but its $742,449 tally for seven previews reps a solid tally for a tuner that only recently began previews.
A trio of recently opened offerings — “Other Desert Cities” ($535,058), “Godspell” ($383,975) and “Venus in Fur” ($370,602) — also were among the handful of productions to uptick at the B.O. And despite opening last week, Kim Cattrall starrer “Private Lives” ($371,370) also managed to rise a bit.
But not all new titles managed to buck the downward trend. “Chinglish” ($210,815) plummeted by 44%, while Alan Rickman topliner “Seminar” ($249,503) was hobbled by a week that incorporated press perfs and an opening as well as one performance cancelled due to the star’s illness. “The Mountaintop” ($581,393) also slid notably.
In the new musical category, “Lysistrata Jones” ($139,404 for seven previews) struggled to turn heads and “Bonnie and Clyde” ($346,744) went down even though it played more performances than the prior frame.
Overall, Main Stem sales took a breath (as they often do) in advance of the travel spike over the Thanksgiving holiday. The Turkey Day sesh has long been one of the most profitable frames on Broadway, although in recent years the week has proven most bountiful to the shows that are already big hits, while productions with less of a profile can have trouble drawing crowds.
Whether that’ll prove the case this year remains to be seen. Last week, in any event, overall sales slipped about $875,000 to around $23 million for 34 shows on the boards. Attendance was down by about 6,750 to around 250,000, filling Broadway to 77% of the week’s overall capacity.