Summer week boosts Broadway sales
“Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark” surged at the box office last week, with sales swinging upward in a frame fueled by summertime tourist traffic.
Most of the Main Stem’s larger-scale draws climbed, but it was “Spider-Man” ($1,702,866) that stood out thanks to a stellar $430,000 (or 34%) bump up from the prior sesh. That tally indicates that, at least for now, the show’s latest round of unenthusiastic reviews hasn’t dented theatergoer interest. The cliffhanger, of course, is whether the show can continue to post those major numbers after the summer, when tourist biz dries up.
“Spider-Man” held its spot at number three in the Top 10 after “Wicked” ($1,830,739) and “The Lion King” ($1,748,215), while just behind it “The Book of Mormon” ($1,215,619) broke another house record and topped the $1.2 million mark for the first time.
As often happens, “Mary Poppins” ($1,103,991) was one of the top benefactors of the city-visitor influx, with the resulting increase in family biz helping to push B.O. up by some $180,000. A handful of other productions also climbed by more than $100,000 each, including “Billy Elliot” ($951,214), “Mamma Mia!” ($892,334) and “The Addams Family” ($688,488), while longtime tourist fave “The Phantom of the Opera” ($1,006,430) returned to the millionaires’ club.
Even the revival of “How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying” ($1,054,587) broke the $1 million mark despite only playing seven perfs last week, when the Wednesday performance was canceled due to a stagehand death in an incident unrelated to the running of the show.
Only a few productions reported declines in sales, and most of those were negligible. One of the season’s Tony nominees, “Catch Me If You Can” ($775,977) was off a bit, while Beatles tribute concert “Rain” ($318,309) played nine perfs but didn’t have much to show for it.
Three productions ended their runs, with “The Importance of Being Earnest” ($338,319) up 34% and “Born Yesterday” ($263,123) rising 29% thanks to last-minute biz. “The House of Blue Leaves” ($400,636) climbed a bit in its own final frame.