“Natasha, Pierre and the Great Comet of 1812” Soars at the Box Office
In the week ending May 14, 2017, the Broadway industry had a healthy week overall, bringing in $997,224 more than the week before across the 36 shows running. Most notably, Natasha, Pierre and the Great Comet of 1812 alone increased by $301,606 from the week before, bringing in a gross of $1,177,329. This is the fourth highest weekly gross of the show’s run to date, with the only three weeks that topped this past week taking place in the first three weeks of 2017 during the holiday season. The timeliness of this box office boost is no accident; this new musical earned the most Tony Award nominations of any show this year. The nominations were announced on May 2, 2017, and Natasha, Pierre stood out among the rest. The twelve nominations for which this show is in the running are Best Musical, Best Book of a Musical for Dave Malloy, Best Original Score for Dave Malloy, Best Performance by a Leading Actor in a Musical for Josh Groban, Best Performance by a Leading Actress in a Musical for Denee Benton, Best Performance by a Featured Actor in a Musical for Lucas Steele, Best Scenic Design of a Musical for Mimi Lien, Best Costume Design of a Musical for Paloma Young, Best Lighting Design of a Musical for Bradley King, Best Direction of a Musical for Rachel Chavkin, and Best Orchestrations for Dave Malloy. While this extraordinary weekly gross still represents just 89.0% of the show’s gross potential, the increase is a mark of confidence for theatregoers, who are eager to check out this show that has received so much recognition from the Tony nominating committee.
The 2017 revival of Arthur Miller’s play The Price had its final performance on May 14, 2017, after running for just 100 performances including previews. Directed by Terry Kinney, this starry production had a cast including Mark Ruffalo, Tony Shalhoub, Jessica Hecht, and Danny DeVito, the latter making his Broadway debut. This past week, The Price brought in the highest gross of its run in its closing week. The final weekly gross was $773,910, which is an increase of $128,100 from the week before, and which represents 93.13% of its gross potential. With a top ticket price of $250.00, the average paid admission was $129.20, and the audience was filled up to 101.2% of capacity across the eight performances. Over the course of the twelve and a half week run, the average percentage reached of gross potential was 77.02%. Besides this past week, the highest weekly gross took place in the week ending April 16, 2017, which had a gross of $662,644. Therefore, theatregoers were reluctant to see The Price conclude on Broadway, rushing to grab tickets in the final week before it closed. The show was nominated for just one Tony Award, that for Danny DeVito for the award for Best Performance by a Featured Actor in a Play. He is competing against Michael Aronov from Oslo, Nathan Lane from The Front Page, Richard Thomas from Lillian Hellman’s The Little Foxes, and John Douglas Thompson from August Wilson’s Jitney. Nevertheless, the production failed to receive a nomination for the Tony Award for Best Revival; those nominees are August Wilson’s Jitney, Lillian Hellman’s The Little Foxes, Present Laughter, and Six Degrees of Separation.
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