You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Ratings: Tony Awards Flirt With Record Lows Opposite Big NBA Finals

Broadway may have had a record-setting year at the box office, but that didn’t translate to viewers for the Tony Awards on CBS, as Sunday’s telecast — opposite ABC’s dominant coverage of the NBA Finals — delivered one of the event’s smallest audiences ever.

According to preliminary national estimates from Nielsen, the “69th Annual Tony Awards” averaged a 0.9 rating/3 share in adults 18-49 and 6.35 million viewers overall on CBS from 8 to 11. It was down 25% in the demo (from 1.2 rating) and 9% in total viewers (7.05 million) from last year. This is the lowest-ever demo rating for the kudocast (though it could round up to a 1.0 in the nationals, which would match the score for 2012), but it managed to avoid an outright record-low in total viewership, which remains the 6.01 million who watched in 2012; 2007 (6.22 million) and 2008 (6.27 million) were also lower than last night’s 6.4 million.

Last night’s telecast scored well in its backyard, with WCBS in New York attracting its highest Tony Award ratings in three years in both adults 25-54 (3.7 rating, up 23% from last year’s 3.0) and adults 18-49 (3.6 rating, up 44% vs. last year’s 2.5).

See More: ‘Fun Home,’ ‘Curious Incident,’ Helen Mirren Win Big at 2015 Tony Awards

According to CBS, online traffic to all CBS branded properties was up, with double-digit year-over-year increases in both unique users and unique visits. Traffic to Tony Awards content on cbs.com Web properties on the day of the event hit an all-time high, showing year-over-year double-digit increases for unique users and unique visits.

The best-rated Tonys of recent years came in 2009 (1.3 rating in 18-49 and 7.43 million viewers overall).

Game 2 of the NBA Finals on ABC averaged a 6.1 rating/19 share in adults 18-49 and 15.6 million viewers overall on ABC’s stations from 8 to 11 p.m., with these numbers subject to revision in the nationals since they don’t accurately reflect West Coast viewing. In Nielsen’s metered-market overnights, the Cleveland Cavaliers’ 97-95 victory over the Golden State Warriors to even the best-of-seven series at one game apiece averaged a 12.9 household rating — up 26% from last year.

The 12.9 matches the score for Thursday’s Game 1, and the two-game average of 12.9 is the best ever on ABC (which began coverage in 2003) and the best on any network since NBC’s coverage of the Philadelphia 76ers-Los Angeles Lakers series in 2001. Both local markets, the Bay Area (31.7) and Cleveland (42.1), were up from their already record-setting deliveries for Game 1. Game 3 is set for Tuesday night in Cleveland.

Game 1 ended up averaging a 6.9 rating in 18-49 and 17.7 million total viewers.

Elsewhere, NBC again fared better with newsmagazine “Dateline” from 7 to 9 p.m. (0.9/3 in 18-49, 4.8 million viewers overall) than original episodes of dramas “A.D. The Bible Continues” (0.7/2 in 18-49, 4.0 million viewers overall) and “American Odyssey” (0.4/1 in 18-49, 2.6 million viewers overall). “Dateline” this week was broken down into two hours, with the 7 p.m. segment averaging a 0.7/3 in 18-49 and 4.6 million viewers overall), and the premiere of “Dateline: My Kid Would Never Do That” doing a 1.0/4 in 18-49 and 5.0 million viewers overall — matching the top demo score for a Sunday “Dateline” since April 26.

Fox aired repeats of “Bob’s Burgers” (0.4/2 in 18-49, 1.7 million viewers overall at 7, and 0.5/2 in 18-49, 1.5 million at 7:30), “The Simpsons” (0.8/3 in 18-49, 1.3 million viewers overall), “Brooklyn Nine-Nine” (0.6/2 in 18-49, 2.6 million viewers overall) and “Family Guy” (0.7/2 in 18-49, 1.2 million viewers overall). They were followed by an original episode of “Golan the Insatiable” (0.4/1 in 18-49, 1.2 million viewers overall), which was down 0.2 from last week’s premiere.

More TV

  • The First -- "The Choice" -

    'The First' Canceled at Hulu After One Season

    Hulu has grounded the space exploration drama “The First” after one season, Variety has confirmed. The series hailed from Beau Willimon and starred Sean Penn and Natascha McElhone in Penn’s first regular television role. “The First” was set in the near future and followed the first human mission to Mars. Hulu gave the show a straight-to-series order in [...]

  • Nicole Maines Supergirl Trans Hollywood Portrait

    TV Roundup: 'Supergirl' Drops First Look at Nicole Maines as TV's First Trans Superhero

    In today’s TV News Roundup, The CW releases a first look at Nicole Maines on “Supergirl” and Variety unveils an exclusive look at Gabriel Iglesias’ new comedy special.  FIRST LOOKS truTV has released the first trailer for season 2 of Emmy-nominated series “At Home with Amy Sedaris.” The variety sketch comedy returns Tuesday, Feb. 19 at [...]

  • The Beatles Eight Days a Week

    Imagine's Documentary Arm Sets First-Look Pact With Apple (EXCLUSIVE)

    Brian Grazer and Ron Howard’s Imagine Documentaries has set a first-look pact with Apple to develop non-fiction features and series. The deal comes as Imagine is investing heavily in the premium non-fiction arena. The company in June recruited RadicalMedia veteran Justin Wilkes to head Imagine Documentaries as president. The deal suggests that Apple sees docu [...]

  • Fyre Festival Documentaries: The 10 Most

    Fyre Festival Documentaries: The 10 Most Outrageous Moments

    It is perhaps only fitting that two documentaries about the disastrous Fyre Festival, one of the most high-profile fraudulent failures in history, would arrive during the same week — a fitting cap on a tragicomedy of errors that, as both films outline in excruciating detail, unfolded like a slow-motion plane crash in the spring of [...]

  • Walt Disney HQ LA

    Disney Unveils Financial Data for DTC Unit, Sets April 11 for Investor Presentation

    Disney has rejiggered its business segments for earnings reporting to make room for the new unit housing its global streaming operations. Disney on Friday released restated earnings for fiscal 2018, 2017 and 2016 to give investors and financial analysts better visibility into its spending on the launch of the Disney Plus, ESPN Plus and other [...]

  • annapurna logo

    Annapurna TV Taps Amazon's Patrick Chu as Senior VP, Promotes Ali Krug

    Annapurna TV has brought on Patrick Chu as the division’s new senior VP. Prior to that, he had served as an executive for Amazon in drama, production, and development, where he oversaw small-screen adaptations of “Hanna” and “The Hunt.” He will develop and produce new TV projects, focusing on drama, at his new role at [...]

  • Emmys: Why The TV Academy Finally

    Why the TV Academy Finally Ended Emmys DVD Madness, and Who Might Benefit the Most

    Three years ago, Netflix overwhelmed Television Academy members by sending out a 20-pound shipment of DVD screeners. It was an exercise in excess, as insiders suggested that the streamer spent as much as $4 million to produce and ship the multiple boxes. Netflix chief content officer Ted Sarandos hated the idea of sending out these [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content