Broadway had a bit of post-partum depression after the birth of the baby New Year, with grosses falling to a total of $12,348,249 — a decline of 36.6% from the salad days of the previous week.
As tourists left the city and things went back to business as usual, Broadway took a big hit, with all but one of its 28 shows in decline. Many dropped a whopping six-figure sum, compensating for the inflated prices and high times of the previous week.
Attendance was at 216,927, a large decline from the previous week’s figure of 286,357 tickets sold. Ticket prices, inflated for the year-end high of the previous week, generally returned to their normal level last week.
Two shows shuttered in the final week of December, leaving a somewhat leaner roster of musicals and plays on the Great White Way.
Among those hardest hit by the general sluggishness were “Annie Get Your Gun” and “Seussical.” “Seussical” dropped a whopping $465,986, to net $292,800 out of $755,427, indicating trouble for the show in the weeks ahead. “Annie Get Your Gun” took a commensurate load of lead, dropping $457,522 to close at $277,088 out of $790,214. It remains to be seen how long producers will be able to keep these shows running.
Also taking serious lumps last week was “The Music Man” (down $406,965 to net $436,030 out of $732,133). Even top 10 shows such as “Beauty and the Beast” and “Aida” showed significant declines, dropping more than $300,000 each.
The only show on Broadway to show any uphill action last week was the Roundabout’s “Betrayal,” which returned to an eight-perf week after the previous week’s seven shows and took a handy gain of $35,367 as a result.
For Broadway’s majority of shows, even for its season hits, the losses of week 32 served as a harbinger of the winter ahead. January and February are traditionally the toughest months for Broadway.