With a slew of distractions coinciding this weekend, legiters are bracing for a rough patch at the box office — and not because of the economy.
This year Halloween falls on a Friday, putting trick-or-treating and costume parties in direct competish with one weekend perf — and weekend shows are usually the Rialto’s biggest earners. There’s also the five-borough draw of the New York City Marathon, set for Sunday.
Sunday also marks the end of daylight saving time. Every year like clockwork, B’way grosses dip in the wake of a time change.
Nobody can explain the reliable slide, but nonetheless legiters already are prepped for diminished sales next week.
Plus, maybe you’ve heard, there’s an election Tuesday. Rialto watchers expect the imminent presidential showdown at the ballot box to eat up even more media and consumer attention, further shaving coin off upcoming receipts.
Given the pervasive anxiety over the economy, it’ll be tempting to view such sales slippage as further proof of a fiscal downturn.
But a number of legiters point out that, despite a recent rash of closing notices, Broadway is still doing pretty well — at least so far. Previewing “Billy Elliot” is proving that a new big-budget tuner can still catch fire at the box office, and a slate of star-driven play revivals — including “All My Sons,” “Equus” and “The Seagull”– are all doing biz that would be considered robust even in boom times.