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Broadway Box Office: Crowdpleasers Climb in Spring Break Season

Spring really started to heat things up at the Broadway box office last week, with the seasonal influx of city visitors driving a spike in sales — especially at the biggest names most likely to pull in tourists, like “Wicked,” “The Lion King” and “Aladdin.”

Wicked” ($1,662,470) shot up by more than $300,000 (or almost 20%) last week, with “The Lion King” ($1,708,789) and “Aladdin” ($1,325,184) each leaping by about $250,000 compared to the previous week. “School of Rock” ($900,072), “Kinky Boots” ($844,214), “The Phantom of the Opera” ($723,466) and “The King and I” ($633,677) also were among the many shows to get a big bump.

Plays got in on the action too, with “Blackbird” ($411,984) picking up even in its comp-heavy opening week, while previewing “The Crucible” ($583,709 for seven), the Arthur Miller classic starring Saoirse Ronan, gained significant steam in previews and Lupita Nyong’o outing “Eclipsed” ($421,319) rising after opening to glowing reviews.

Every single production now running registered a week-to-week gain last week — except, that is, for “Hamilton” ($1,758,555), which posted a microscopic decline and still easily landed at the top of the Top 10.

One show closed last week — the well-reviewed Roundabout Theater Company revival of “Noises Off” ($557,404), seeing a nice rise in its final frame — but two, “Blackbird” and “Disaster!” (up a bit to $318,847), opened, with more on the way: “She Loves Me” ($409,091) bows Thursday and Steve Martin-Edie Brickell musical “Bright Star” ($301,410) opens March 24.

Overall Broadway sales shot up by more than $3 million to $23.7 million for 31 shows; attendance rose by nearly 20,000 to 249,626. Judging from previous years, those numbers will likely rise further in the next couple of weeks, as the final batch of spring shows start up (including “Shuffle Along,” starting previews tomorrow) and spring break season continues to supply crowds.

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