Broadway box office was down 11% last week, but don’t jump to any coronavirus conclusions: Attendance was down a small 3%, and the slide in receipts can be chalked up at least in part to theater-going children.
With more than a dozen productions participating in the annual Kids Night On Broadway – children free with paying adults – and To Kill A Mockingbird giving up an entire night of paying audiences for the 18,000 students filling Madison Square Garden Feb. 26 – total box office receipts for the week ending March 1 slipped to $26,109,419, from $29M the previous week.
Attendance of 244,515 for the 28 productions was off 3% from the previous week’s 250,954.
All of the productions participating in Kids Night – Ain’t Too Proud, Aladdin, Beetlejuice, Chicago, Come From Away, Frozen, Jagged Little Pill, To Kill a Mockingbird, The Lion King, Mean Girls, Moulin Rouge!, The Phantom of the Opera, Six and Wicked – reported box office slips. Harry Potter and the Cursed Child played two autism-friendly performances on Sunday, March 1 with tickets sold at reduced prices.
Two productions played their final weeks: My Name Is Lucy Barton, the solo play starring Laura Linney, was up four grand in its last week, taking $568,736, with 98% of seats filled at the Samuel J. Friedman Theatre. Grand Horizons, Bess Wohl’s play starring Jane Alexander and James Cromwell, ended its run at the Helen Hayes on an up note: $304,720, a climb of about $60,000 for the non-profit Second Stage.
Two productions began previews: The Minutes at the Cort, and Hangmen at the John Golden. The former, written by Tracy Letts, was finding its footing, taking in $437,237, less than half of its eight-performance potential; opening night is March 15. Martin McDonagh’s Hangmen was at 65% of potential for its first two previews, grossing $139,321; opening night is March 19.
Girl From the North Country, the Conor McPherson/Bob Dylan musical at the Belasco, grossed $503,694, with plenty of press comps helping to keep receipts at about half of potential. The production opens this week – March 5.
Also in previews, the musical Six – an Olivier-nominated pop take on Henry VIII’s wives – was strong at the Brooks Atkinson, $896,885, with 98% of seats filled.
Filling all seats were Come From Away, Hadestown, Hamilton, Moulin Rouge!, and Ivo van Hove’s West Side Story, the latter taking in $1.6M at the Broadway Theatre. Harry Potter was just 58 seats shy of full.
Season to date, Broadway has grossed $1,331,947,089, down about 5% year to year. Total attendance stands at 10,884,334, off about 2% from last year at this time.
All figures courtesy of the trade group Broadway League.