Thursday, April 18, 2024

In Tough Winter Broadway Hopes for a Hot Holiday Weekend with Total Box Office Down, Lowest Since September


It’s been a tough winter for Broadway at the box office. This past weekend’s take was $27.9 million, the lowest since last September, and before that almost exactly a year ago. By President’s Day weekend, the theaters are praying for a surge in customers.

A lot of the big shows are way down because of their relative age.  “The Book of Mormon,” especially, could use a kick in the pants. They’ve missed the $1 million mark for two weeks. Last week they were at $967K.

The Great White Way is waiting for the new “West Side Story,” which has been doing very well in its long non review preview period. But I’ve seen it, and I can tell you, I’m not sure the reviews on February 20th will be so glowing. The Times may like it just to appear hip, but the show is mostly video screens. Once it can be reviewed, “West Side Story” won’t be such a snap to sell to the masses.

All the newer shows have toughed it over the cold, dark days of winter, even the Tina Turner musical. “A Soldier’s Play” and “Jagged Little Pill” have done “alright” but they haven’t stirred the pot. Others like “Grand Horizons” are really struggling. The only real hit is David Byrne’s “American Utopia,” but it closes on Sunday. Byrne must need a rest. But the show could play for months more to sold out houses.


Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman began his Showbiz411 column in April 2009 after 10 years with Fox News, where he created the Fox411 column. His movie reviews are carried by Rotten Tomatoes, and he is a member of both the movie and TV branches of the Critics Choice Awards. His articles have appeared in dozens of publications over the years including New York Magazine, where he wrote the Intelligencer column in the mid 90s and covered the OJ Simpson trial, and Fox News (when it wasn't so crazy) where he covered Michael Jackson. He is also the writer and co-producer of "Only the Strong Survive," a selection of the Cannes, Sundance, and Telluride Film festivals, directed by DA Pennebaker and Chris Hegedus.

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