×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Broadway Box Office: These Shows Could Use Some Tony Attention

Harry Potter and the Cursed Child,” “Frozen,” and “Mean Girls” are ready to make a splash in the 2018 Tony nominations Tuesday morning — but those shows hardly need attention from the Tony Awards to draw big crowds. It’s softer-selling productions like “SpongeBob SquarePants” that could stand to get a much-needed boost at the Broadway box office.

In the wake of rave reviews, “Harry Potter” ($1,886,079) stepped up almost 50% compared to its opening week the previous frame and landed at No. 3 in the Top 10 — and the show still wasn’t hitting its real heights, due to comps for Tony nominators and second-night press. New musicals “Frozen” ($1,684,280) and “Mean Girls” ($1,457,577)? They, too, would do just fine without the noms they’re likely to land.

The critical favorite in the new musical category, and widely considered the frontrunner for the trophy, is “The Band’s Visit” ($908,565), and that one’s also looking strong, especially for a quiet, modestly scaled musical without a big brand name behind it. Still, a hefty haul at the nominations could help push the show back up to the million-plus weekly grosses it was posting earlier in its run.

But it’s “SpongeBob SquarePants” ($543,228), which earned some surprising affection from the critics but has had trouble turning ticketbuyers’ heads, that could really use the attention that Tony noms could bring. “SpongeBob” seems the most likely candidate to score the fourth spot in the new musical race, and an acting nomination seems certain for star Ethan Slater; a nod for the eclectic score, from a crowd of high-profile musicians, might well happen, too. Meanwhile, Jimmy Buffett musical “Escape to Margaritaville” ($626,379) could also use the spotlight that nominations might give it.

Based on the reviews, Donna Summer bio-musical “Summer” might not get much attention in the nominations. But who needs it? “Summer” ($1,055,612) topped $1 million for the first time, even in a week that accommodated the comps for its April 23 opening night. Another good sign: The production’s grosses have consistently built momentum every week it’s been running so far.

Among starry play revivals, “Three Tall Women” ($871,551) is already going strong, but seems poised to rise further on the strength of the nominations it’ll probably score; “The Iceman Cometh” ($824,595 for five paid performances) will only grow, too, after last week’s press performances and opening night. “Angels in America” ($921,368) is second only to “Harry Potter” on the list of top-selling plays, but it has room to grow, too, in the wake of nominations.

Overall Broadway sales last week slipped about $2 million to $35.3 million for 35 shows now playing. Attendance was down slightly to 305,422, or 89% of overall capacity.

More Legit

  • The Laugh Factory Gives Back with

    The Laugh Factory Gives Back With Meals and Programs

    They say that everyone has a story to tell. It’s become Jamie Masada’s mission to help some people learn how to tell theirs. For 35 years, the founder of the Laugh Factory has made his main location on Sunset Boulevard home to a comedy camp for kids ages 9 to 16. While all are welcome [...]

  • Jamie Masada Dave Chapelle Laugh Factory

    Jamie Masada Reflects on 40 Years of the Laugh Factory

    When Jamie Masada was a young kid, growing up poor and Jewish in Iran, his father told him that, because he had been a good boy, he would take the son to see a moving picture. Masada didn’t know what that meant, but he went with his father to the shopping district at night. They [...]

  • Lungs review

    London Theater Review: 'Lungs' Starring Claire Foy and Matt Smith

    What, to ask the perennial theatergoer’s question, is Duncan Macmillan’s “Lungs” about? It’s about climate change, isn’t it? No, it’s a play about deciding whether to have a baby. Actually, like his earlier success “People, Places, Things,” in which Macmillan balanced a personal story with a depiction of addiction, it’s a juggling of two subjects [...]

  • Bella Bella review

    Off Broadway Review: Harvey Fierstein's 'Bella Bella'

    Harvey Fierstein is one busy guy. A Broadway institution with four Tony Awards for acting (“Torch Song Trilogy,” “Hairspray”) and playwriting (“Torch Song Trilogy,” “La Cage aux Folles”), he has also written everything from teleplays (“The Wiz Live!”, “Hairspray Live!”) to an award-winning children’s book, “The Sissy Duckling.” His movie work includes “Mrs. Doubtfire” and [...]

  • Soft Power Jeanine Tesori

    Listen: Jeanine Tesori and the 'Soft Power' of Musicals to Change Minds

    The title of “Soft Power,” the new play-cum-musical by playwright David Henry Hwang and composer Jeanine Tesori, refers to cultural influence — in this case the cultural influence of America on China, and of China on the U.S. According to Tesori, the term might also describe the force that musical theater itself can exert in [...]

  • Jane Alexander James Cromwell

    Jane Alexander, James Cromwell to Star in Broadway's 'Grand Horizons'

    Jane Alexander and James Cromwell will head up the Broadway cast of Bess Wohl’s “Grand Horizons.” The two Oscar nominees will star as Bill and Nancy, a couple whose five-decade-long relationship unravels when they move to a retirement community. After Nancy decides she wants a divorce, her family life is sent into disarray. The show [...]

  • Chasing Rainbows review

    New Jersey Theater Review: Judy Garland Bio 'Chasing Rainbows'

    Judy Garland’s voice was unparalleled and rich, an emotive contralto that lasted long into her later years with a loud and winning showiness to go with its melodramatic nuances. But that voice concealed a troubled backstory, as the woman born Frances Ethel Gumm toted the baggage of a closeted gay father, an ugly duckling’s insecurity [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content