Broadway Show Ticket Sales Analysis w/e 12/13/2015

This week’s notable movements on Broadway are:

An Overall Week of Equanimity on Broadway

In the week ending December 13, 2015, the overall Broadway industry saw a series of ups and downs across the 37 shows running, but the resultant figures exhibited little collective change. No shows began previews or closed between this past week and the week before, and the overall weekly gross among these 37 shows only went up by $232,186, a basically negligible amount on this scale. The largest increase was seen by School of Rock – the Musical, which had a bit of a slump week the week before, perhaps due to papering seats in the week before their opening night. However, this past week, the weekly gross was $956,818, which was an increase of $287,790 from the week before that. Still, there is more room for growth for his Andrew Lloyd Webber reboot of a movie, as that higher gross was still just 66.9% of its gross potential in the Winter Garden Theatre. In a bit of a surprise, the next biggest increase in ticket sales this past week was seen by Lord of the Dance: Dangerous Games, which went up by $143,987 to reach a still low gross of $391,608. Despite still reaching the low gross potential percentage of 26.1%, this 37% increase from the week before is testament to increased marketing efforts on behalf of this struggling Irish dance show.

“China Doll” Took a Slight Dip After Reviews

The biggest dissonance between quality of reviews and box office performance this season may very well be China Doll, the new David Mamet play starring Al Pacino that has continued to reap in gloriously at the box office despite reports of a terrible production on most fronts. Upon the show’s delayed opening on the night of December 4, 2015, the reviews revealed the show an all-around critical flop. Rare is it that so many critics from a wide array of press outlets all agree that a show is not worth the hype. However, this message does not seem to have gotten through to ticket buyers, who still are paying top dollar to see this movie star in the flesh, in a play written by the rare playwright who has become a household name. Nevertheless, in the first full week since that opening, the box office did take a dip. Of all the shows this past week, China Doll saw the largest decrease in its weekly gross, with a decrease of $187,026. However, the weekly gross was still not bad at $922,936, representing 96.4% of its gross potential. Furthermore, average audience capacity was 93.4%, a number that is not too bad despite it being a decrease from 97.2% the week before. Still, the other reason this gross took a dip is that the production only played six performances this past week, down from its usual seven. While it is standard for most shows to play 8 shows in a week, China Doll is entitled in more ways than one; beyond taking in box office for a show that all have decided is terrible, it also can pick and choose how many performances to play in a week, at the whim of its high-profile lead actor and creative team.

The following are the Broadway ticket sales numbers for the week ending December 13, 2015:Broadway-Show-Ticket-Analysis-12-13-15

Show Name GrossGross TotalAttn %Capacity AvgPdAdm
A GENTLEMAN’S GUIDE TO LOVE AND MURDER $533,824.50 5,990 82.55% $89.12
A VIEW FROM THE BRIDGE $541,565.00 6,492 76.77% $83.42
ALADDIN $1,586,493.50 13,435 97.24% $118.09
ALLEGIANCE $398,204.07 4,960 58.66% $80.28
AN AMERICAN IN PARIS $1,274,776.00 10,389 77.35% $122.70
BEAUTIFUL $1,137,047.00 8,030 97.83% $141.60
CHICAGO $497,277.25 5,917 68.48% $84.04
CHINA DOLL $922,935.57 5,991 93.41% $154.05
DAMES AT SEA $116,501.00 2,133 45.73% $54.62
FIDDLER ON THE ROOF $1,047,622.40 11,729 85.89% $89.32
FINDING NEVERLAND $898,499.00 8,855 73.60% $101.47
FOOL FOR LOVE $250,127.00 3,467 77.51% $72.15
FUN HOME $582,966.40 5,194 87.74% $112.24
HAMILTON $1,639,633.50 10,727 101.50% $152.85
HAND TO GOD $192,646.50 3,363 54.45% $57.28
JERSEY BOYS $691,897.80 6,650 67.69% $104.04
KING CHARLES III $577,162.40 5,309 67.92% $108.71
KINKY BOOTS $983,038.50 8,983 78.85% $109.43
LES MISÉRABLES $681,566.00 7,599 67.41% $89.69
LORD OF THE DANCE: DANGEROUS GAMES $391,608.30 5,913 38.98% $66.23
MATILDA $776,648.00 8,803 76.84% $88.23
MISERY $752,623.30 6,246 66.39% $120.50
ON YOUR FEET! $1,331,812.40 11,752 90.34% $113.33
SCHOOL OF ROCK $956,818.00 10,437 91.49% $91.68
SOMETHING ROTTEN! $865,216.00 9,191 74.37% $94.14
SPRING AWAKENING $380,832.00 5,514 67.18% $69.07
SYLVIA $284,987.50 5,544 64.71% $51.40
THE BOOK OF MORMON $1,593,849.00 8,712 102.16% $182.95
THE COLOR PURPLE $696,029.80 8,370 99.55% $83.16
THE CURIOUS INCIDENT OF THE DOG IN THE NIGHT-TIME $558,174.00 6,091 74.79% $91.64
THE GIN GAME $356,744.50 3,763 67.03% $94.80
THE ILLUSIONISTS – LIVE ON BROADWAY $733,198.75 7,712 69.70% $95.07
THE KING AND I $782,810.00 6,374 76.10% $122.81
THE LION KING $2,008,986.00 13,390 98.69% $150.04
THE PHANTOM OF THE OPERA $741,288.07 8,275 64.45% $89.58
THÉRÈSE RAQUIN $369,160.05 5,001 61.35% $73.82
WICKED $1,732,290.00 13,927 96.34% $124.38
Totals $29,866,859.06 280,228 76.79% $100.75

Broadway ticket sales raw data are provided courtesy of The Broadway League All other data, text, opinion, charts and commentary are copyright © 2015

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With over 20 years experience in the Broadway field, including show marketing, production, development and investment, Jennifer R Jones is an all-around subject-matter-expert in the Broadway business. She lives in Manhattan with her husband and her iMac and tries to see at least five Broadway shows per week and when time will allow, will sneak in a daytime TV production for fun.
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