Broadway rebounds

'Lion King' returns to millionaires' club

The Rialto continued its gradual rebound last week, with total grosses climbing about $725,000 to $13.95 million for 24 shows on the boards. Attendance grew by about 10,000 to slightly more than 185,000.

After the usual sales dip experienced on Broadway after Labor Day — this year total weekly grosses fell by almost $4 million over the post-holiday frame — receipts traditionally begin to rise again as the fall season kicks into gear.

Most productions got bumps at the box office last week, with “The Lion King” ($1,048,250) climbing about $60,000 to return to the millionaires’ club. Stepping up by more than $50,000 each were “Wicked” ($1,405,642), “Mamma Mia!” ($886,227) and, continuing to stay unexpectedly strong over September, “Curtains” ($737,268).

Three plays also added to the cume, with “The Ritz” ($261,508) and “Mauritius” ($190,147) each playing a full week of previews for the first time and “Pygmalion” ($141,710) beginning its limited engagement with a four-show sesh.

A few shows diminished at the box office, with “The Drowsy Chaperone” ($443,451) — whose sales have slowed considerably in recent weeks — seeing the largest decline of the frame, falling more than $40,000 and playing to just 56% of capacity.

“Mary Poppins” ($799,647) and “A Chorus Line” ($403,294) stumbled by about $25,000 each, while “Spring Awakening” ($597,230), down about $15,000, has yet to experience a post-Labor Day uptick.

The 21 musicals grossed $13,365,015 for 95.7% of the Broadway total, with an attendance of 173,783 at 78.6% capacity and average paid admission of $76.91. The 3 plays grossed $593,365 for 4.3% of the Broadway total, with an attendance of 12,078 at 74.5% capacity and average paid admission of $49.13. Average paid admission was $75.10 for all shows.

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