Jennifer R Jones

About Jennifer R Jones

With over 20 years experience in the Broadway field, including marketing, production, development and show 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.

“Rock of Ages” Concludes Its Run

A Runaway Hit with an 80s Jukebox Score

Rock of Ages Broadway Musical celebrates RocktoberfestOn March 17, 2009, a show called Rock of Ages opened at the Helen Hayes Theatre on Broadway, having transferred from its Off-Broadway run at New World Stages, which followed its Los Angeles premiere in 2005 at a club on Hollywood Boulevard. This jukebox musical featured a book by Chris D’Arienzo along with a rocking score of 80s hits. Unlike other jukebox musicals that focus on one artist (The Four Seasons, Carole King, Abba, Queen, the list goes on), this musical decided to embrace an entire decade (the 80s) and the lifestyle that went with it: head-banging punk style, giant hopes and dreams, and a timeless love story. Though it was certainly not a surefire success, the show defied expectations and managed to run for almost six years and well over 2000 performances. In this time, it managed to gross over $125 million, well exceeding its capitalization and earning a huge amount of profit. Furthermore, a high budget film adaptation starring Tom Cruise, Catherine Zeta-Jones, and Alec Baldwin was released in 2012. Nevertheless, the show has finally wore out its welcome, as it has announced it will close on January 18, 2015.

Now Second Stage Can Purchase the Helen Hayes

Several Off-Broadway theatre companies have immortalized their presence in New York City while substantiating a higher profit margin by purchasing and producing in one or more Broadway venues (such as Roundabout and Manhattan Theater Club). Second Stage Theatre, which has held a prominent place in the Off-Broadway scene for many years from its central location at West 43rd Street and 8th Avenue, announced in 2008 that it planned to purchase the Helen Hayes Theatre, a desire Broadway venue due to its size, atmosphere, and location. Because Rock of Ages held on for so much longer than expected, this transaction was unable to take place. However, now that Rock of Ages is finally leaving town, Second Stage will be able to proceed with its plan. This will hopefully allow the company to thrive and contribute to the type of fare that manages to bridge the commercial with the quality-driven, an approach that not-for-profit theatre companies can more easily take than can commercial producers.

The Global Brand of “Rock of Ages” Will ContinueRock of Ages Broadway Show

Though the Broadway show will close, it has delighted countless audience members and has opened productions all over the world, many of which are still running. Versions of the show are still in operation in Mexico City, Las Vegas, and also on the Norwegian Cruise Line Breakaway. The show had its Asian English language premiere in Manila, the Philippines, where it presented the show in 2012, 2013, and 2014. The musical also played in Australia (Melbourne and Brisbane), as well as Toronto from 2010-11. In addition, two different U.S. National tours played, one in 2010-11, and a second tour (non-Equity) from 2011-14. This of course is in addition to the feature film, which was not a financial success; its budget was $75 million, but it only brought in $59.4 million in box office grosses. Still, with digital streaming, the movie will continue to bring in revenue, and the global brand of Rock of Ages will live on, long after the Broadway show closes.

Broadway Show Ticket Sales Analysis w/e 1/11/2015

This week’s notable movements on Broadway are:

An Entirely Declining Week

In the week ending January 11, 2015, every single show saw a decrease in sales. The easiest way to account for this is the winter season. As the New Years and Christmas holidays are officially over, tourists have returned to their hometowns and New Yorkers are staying cozy inside whenever possible. As a result, every single one of the 29 shows currently running saw a decrease in sales from the week before. The greatest decrease was seen by Wicked, which grossed $1,147,418 from the week before, resulting in a weekly gross of $1,593,224. Although this is still an impressive 94.77% of the show’s gross potential, it is an incredible decline. The Phantom of the Opera also saw a large decrease of $834,864, resulting in a weekly gross of $814,242. Six figure decreases were in fact seen by almost all of the shows, with the lowest decrease seen by Disgraced, which only went down by $3,898.

Struggling Shows

In the winter season, quite a few shows are showing signs of having difficulty staying afloat. The lowest percentage of gross potential was reached by On the Town, the musical revival occupying the gigantic Lyric Theatre. With a potential weekly gross of $1,790,076, On the Town only earned $626,999, which was decrease of $341,360 from the week before. The represents only 35.03% of its gross potential. Following shortly thereafter is Honeymoon in Vegas, which only reached 35.44% of its gross potential with a weekly gross of $399,588. You Can’t Take It With You only brought in $392,715, which represents 39.83% of its gross potential. In addition, the Idina Menzel musical If / Then brought in $557,954, which represents only 43.25% of its gross potential. On the other hand, some shows still reached over 100% of their gross potential, including The Book of Mormon, Aladdin, The Elephant Man, and The Lion King.

The following are the Broadway ticket sales numbers for the week ending January 11, 2015:Broadway Show Ticket Analysis week ending 1-11-15

Show Name GrossGross TotalAttn %Capacity AvgPdAdm
A DELICATE BALANCE $582,284 4,706 73.35% $123.73
A GENTLEMAN’S GUIDE TO LOVE AND MURDER $689,857 6,461 89.04% $106.77
ALADDIN $1,388,395 13,784 100.00% $100.73
BEAUTIFUL $1,072,591 7,101 86.51% $151.05
CABARET $805,093 6,223 99.55% $129.37
CHICAGO $480,811 6,269 72.56% $76.70
CONSTELLATIONS $336,203 4,474 98.33% $75.15
DISGRACED $382,854 5,146 70.07% $74.40
HEDWIG AND THE ANGRY INCH $626,117 6,322 89.69% $99.04
HONEYMOON IN VEGAS $399,588 7,269 78.53% $54.97
IF/THEN $557,954 8,288 79.02% $67.32
IT’S ONLY A PLAY $690,904 7,767 90.82% $88.95
JERSEY BOYS $784,031 8,653 88.08% $90.61
KINKY BOOTS $1,006,029 9,557 83.89% $105.27
LES MISÉRABLES $759,690 9,657 85.67% $78.67
MAMMA MIA! $551,132 7,478 80.17% $73.70
MATILDA $879,385 10,640 92.88% $82.65
MOTOWN THE MUSICAL $1,086,042 10,376 86.07% $104.67
ON THE TOWN $626,999 8,703 58.05% $72.04
ROCK OF AGES $444,828 4,528 97.08% $98.24
THE BOOK OF MORMON $1,609,728 8,751 102.61% $183.95
THE CURIOUS INCIDENT OF THE DOG IN THE NIGHT-TIME $860,928 7,940 97.50% $108.43
THE ELEPHANT MAN $994,390 6,265 101.18% $158.72
THE LAST SHIP $840,468 8,230 76.26% $102.12
THE LION KING $1,840,464 13,337 98.07% $138.00
THE PHANTOM OF THE OPERA $814,242 10,531 82.02% $77.32
THE RIVER $668,724 5,387 96.75% $124.14
WICKED $1,593,224 13,591 93.91% $117.23
YOU CAN’T TAKE IT WITH YOU $392,715 5,262 61.30% $74.63
Totals $23,765,668 232,696 86.52% $101.33

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

Broadway Show Ticket Sales Analysis w/e 1/04/2015

This week’s notable movements on Broadway are:

 

The following are the Broadway ticket sales numbers for the week ending January 4, 2015:

Broadway Show Ticket Analysis week 1/4/15

Show Name GrossGross TotalAttn %Capacity AvgPdAdm
A DELICATE BALANCE $648,646 5,456 85.04% $118.89
A GENTLEMAN’S GUIDE TO LOVE AND MURDER $1,011,822 7,379 101.03% $137.12
ALADDIN $1,842,291 13,787 100.02% $133.63
BEAUTIFUL $1,264,728 7,995 97.40% $158.19
CABARET $1,051,850 7,176 100.45% $146.58
CHICAGO $950,544 8,407 97.30% $113.07
CINDERELLA $1,873,246 15,710 99.69% $119.24
CONSTELLATIONS $478,445 5,040 96.92% $94.93
DISGRACED $386,752 5,737 78.12% $67.41
HEDWIG AND THE ANGRY INCH $777,340 6,717 95.29% $115.73
HONEYMOON IN VEGAS $409,674 7,657 82.72% $53.50
IF/THEN $898,321 9,396 89.59% $95.61
IT’S ONLY A PLAY $1,455,818 8,480 99.16% $171.68
JERSEY BOYS $1,091,460 9,265 94.31% $117.80
KINKY BOOTS $1,572,870 12,921 100.82% $121.73
LES MISÉRABLES $1,425,137 12,671 99.92% $112.47
MAMMA MIA! $1,002,625 9,102 97.58% $110.15
MATILDA $1,502,817 11,543 100.76% $130.19
MOTOWN THE MUSICAL $1,215,495 10,613 88.03% $114.53
ON THE TOWN $968,359 11,207 74.75% $86.41
ONCE $967,968 8,608 101.61% $112.45
PIPPIN $907,253 7,897 99.71% $114.89
ROCK OF AGES $583,527 4,550 97.56% $128.25
SIDE SHOW $810,486 10,327 99.07% $78.48
THE BOOK OF MORMON $2,224,280 9,846 102.63% $225.91
THE CURIOUS INCIDENT OF THE DOG IN THE NIGHT-TIME $1,089,779 8,125 99.77% $134.13
THE ELEPHANT MAN $1,069,102 6,364 102.78% $167.99
THE ILLUSIONISTS – WITNESS THE IMPOSSIBLE $2,217,405 18,683 97.49% $118.69
THE LAST SHIP $953,165 8,985 83.26% $106.08
THE LION KING $2,514,994 13,605 100.04% $184.86
THE PHANTOM OF THE OPERA $1,649,106 13,704 94.87% $120.34
THE REAL THING $462,361 5,181 100.02% $89.24
THE RIVER $756,740 5,679 101.99% $133.25
THE TEMPTATIONS AND THE FOUR TOPS ON BROADWAY $819,461 8,780 74.70% $93.33
THIS IS OUR YOUTH $569,187 8,236 86.25% $69.11
WICKED $2,740,642 15,403 99.86% $177.93
YOU CAN’T TAKE IT WITH YOU $610,186 6,681 77.83% $91.33
Totals: $42,773,882 346,913 94.55% $120.68

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

Broadway Show Ticket Sales Analysis w/e 12/28/2014

This week’s notable movements on Broadway are:

The following are the Broadway ticket sales numbers for the week ending December 28, 2014:Broadway-Show-Ticket-Analysis-12-28-14

Show Name GrossGross TotalAttn %Capacity AvgPdAdm
A DELICATE BALANCE $640,592 5,025 78.32% $127.48
A GENTLEMAN’S GUIDE TO LOVE AND MURDER $1,062,731 7,338 100.47% $144.83
ALADDIN $1,986,322 15,508 100.01% $128.08
BEAUTIFUL $1,546,950 8,845 95.79% $174.90
CABARET $1,013,897 7,170 100.36% $141.41
CHICAGO $872,913 8,091 93.65% $107.89
CINDERELLA $1,336,544 11,622 94.82% $115.00
CONSTELLATIONS $384,388 4,133 90.84% $93.00
DISGRACED $393,371 4,809 65.48% $81.80
HEDWIG AND THE ANGRY INCH $733,393 6,502 92.24% $112.79
HONEYMOON IN VEGAS $399,311 6,973 75.33% $57.27
IF/THEN $835,798 8,807 83.97% $94.90
IT’S ONLY A PLAY $1,431,961 8,452 98.83% $169.42
JERSEY BOYS $1,239,004 9,418 95.87% $131.56
KINKY BOOTS $1,532,084 11,219 98.48% $136.56
LES MISÉRABLES $1,286,276 11,148 98.90% $115.38
MAMMA MIA! $964,706 8,762 93.93% $110.10
MATILDA $1,637,071 11,541 100.74% $141.85
MOTOWN THE MUSICAL $1,285,105 11,063 91.76% $116.16
ON THE TOWN $1,068,470 10,446 69.68% $102.29
ONCE $893,494 8,520 100.57% $104.87
PIPPIN $778,718 6,572 82.98% $118.49
ROCK OF AGES $544,368 4,544 97.43% $119.80
SIDE SHOW $588,059 8,115 77.85% $72.47
THE BOOK OF MORMON $2,085,228 8,752 102.63% $238.26
THE CURIOUS INCIDENT OF THE DOG IN THE NIGHT-TIME $1,090,216 8,136 99.90% $134.00
THE ELEPHANT MAN $1,058,547 6,320 102.07% $167.49
THE ILLUSIONISTS – WITNESS THE IMPOSSIBLE $1,811,228 15,114 94.64% $119.84
THE LAST SHIP $864,004 7,836 72.61% $110.26
THE LION KING $2,885,371 15,306 100.04% $188.51
THE PHANTOM OF THE OPERA $1,641,020 12,955 100.90% $126.67
THE REAL THING $434,148 5,530 93.41% $78.51
THE RIVER $771,849 5,570 100.04% $138.57
THIS IS OUR YOUTH $343,256 5,449 73.37% $62.99
WICKED $2,903,309 16,257 99.85% $178.59
YOU CAN’T TAKE IT WITH YOU $650,249 6,873 80.07% $94.61
Totals: $40,993,950 318,721 91.61% $123.79

Broadway ticket sales raw data are provided courtesy of The Broadway League All other data, text, opinion, charts and commentary are copyright © 2014 nytix.com

Broadway Show Ticket Sales Analysis w/e 12/21/2014

This week’s notable movements on Broadway are:

New Show: “Constellations”

On December 16, 2014, Constellations began previews at the Samuel J. Friedman Theatre in a Manhattan Theatre Club production. This production transfers to New York from London, where it premiered at the Royal Court Theatre Upstairs and then transferred to the West End, where it won the Evening Standard Award for Best Play and was nominated for the Olivier Award for the same honor. The play is written by Nick Payne, directed by Michael Longhurst, and the Broadway production stars Jake Gyllenhaal and Ruth Wilson, both making their Broadway debuts. In the week ending December 21, 2014, the play had seven performances and brought in $325,875, which represents 47.95% of its gross potential. The average paid admission was $82.44, which represents a substantial but not huge amount of discounting. This is a slightly unusual time for a show to open, so it may take a few weeks for the show to gain traction and for word of mouth to spread. It will open on January 13, 2015.

“The Lion King” and “Wicked” Still Tourist Favorites

In the week before Christmas, many tourists are in town and they are still showing the same tastes demonstrated in the summer tourist season. In the week ending December 21, 2014, The Lion King brought in $2,200,409, which was an increase of $275,346 from the week before. With an average paid admission of $170.47, that represented 95.32% of the show’s gross capacity. The next biggest earner was Wicked, another proven tourist favorite. This past week, it brought in $1,986,719, an increase of $240,682 from the week before. With an average paid admission of $139.09, it brought in 118.18% of its gross potential. The third highest earner was The Book of Mormon, which brought in $1,862,009, an increase of $122,342, which represents 133.86% of its gross potential. Finally, Aladdin has solidified itself as a top tourist treat, having brought in $1,607,102, which is an increase of $77,814, representing 111.91% of its gross potential.

 

The following are the Broadway ticket sales numbers for the week ending December 21, 2014:

Broadway-Show-Ticket-Analysis chart small 12-21-14

 

Show Name GrossGross TotalAttn %Capacity AvgPdAdm
A DELICATE BALANCE $706,174 5,109 79.63% $138.22
A GENTLEMAN’S GUIDE TO LOVE AND MURDER $841,587 7,046 96.47% $119.44
ALADDIN $1,607,102 13,732 99.62% $117.03
BEAUTIFUL $1,235,710 7,675 93.51% $161.00
CABARET $935,919 7,160 100.22% $130.71
CHICAGO $479,248 5,946 68.82% $80.60
CINDERELLA $990,052 12,307 87.86% $80.45
CONSTELLATIONS $325,875 3,953 86.88% $82.44
DISGRACED $332,589 3,873 52.74% $85.87
HEDWIG AND THE ANGRY INCH $592,551 6,013 85.30% $98.55
HONEYMOON IN VEGAS $321,524 6,343 68.53% $50.69
IF/THEN $525,214 6,477 61.76% $81.09
IT’S ONLY A PLAY $1,408,914 8,345 97.58% $168.83
JERSEY BOYS $837,362 7,255 73.85% $115.42
KINKY BOOTS $1,126,354 9,512 83.50% $118.41
LES MISÉRABLES $858,645 9,027 80.08% $95.12
MAMMA MIA! $527,353 6,155 65.98% $85.68
MATILDA $1,078,021 10,313 90.02% $104.53
MOTOWN THE MUSICAL $889,590 8,366 69.39% $106.33
ON THE TOWN $713,291 8,581 57.24% $83.12
ONCE $666,416 7,186 84.82% $92.74
PIPPIN $512,514 6,327 79.89% $81.00
ROCK OF AGES $400,950 4,358 93.44% $92.00
SIDE SHOW $513,912 7,512 72.06% $68.41
THE BOOK OF MORMON $1,862,009 8,744 102.53% $212.95
THE CURIOUS INCIDENT OF THE DOG IN THE NIGHT-TIME $867,003 7,281 89.40% $119.08
THE ELEPHANT MAN $973,202 6,128 98.97% $158.81
THE ILLUSIONISTS – WITNESS THE IMPOSSIBLE $1,213,927 12,221 85.03% $99.33
THE LAST SHIP $779,799 8,152 75.54% $95.66
THE LION KING $2,200,409 12,908 94.91% $170.47
THE PHANTOM OF THE OPERA $928,596 10,200 79.44% $91.04
THE REAL THING $445,978 5,395 91.13% $82.67
THE RIVER $785,131 5,536 99.43% $141.82
THIS IS OUR YOUTH $322,733 6,123 72.14% $52.71
WICKED $1,986,719 14,284 98.70% $139.09
YOU CAN’T TAKE IT WITH YOU $486,341 5,386 62.74% $90.30
Totals: $31,278,712 280,929 82.75% $108.10

Broadway ticket sales raw data are provided courtesy of The Broadway League All other data, text, opinion, charts and commentary are copyright © 2014 nytix.com

 

Broadway’s “Love Letters” Closes Early

This Rotating Star Vehicle Never Gained Traction

love letters posterA.R. Gurney’s Love Letters is a two-hander play that was just revived at the Brooks Atkinson Theatre, running for a total of 101 performances since September 13, 2014 before closing suddenly on December 14, 2014. Producers Nelle Nugent, Barbara Broccoli, Frederick Zollo, and Olympus Theatricals wooed a series of hot stars who seemed to be perfectly suited to the demographic of the Broadway ticketbuying audience, including Brian Dennehy, Mia Farrow, Carol Burnett, Candice Bergen, and Alan Alda, and the cast was also slated to include Stacy Keach, Diana Rigg, Anjelica Huston, and Martin Sheen – the latter bunch had fortunately not yet entered rehearsals, as they will not get to perform. This is the second time this method of rotating stars in Love Letters was attempted on Broadway; the first took place in 1989, and was apparently successful enough to warrant a revival. However, this time the recipe failed; perhaps because the marketing strategy was ill-conceived, perhaps because the stars chosen were not exciting enough to ticketbuyers, or perhaps because the play itself is tired.

A Financial Failure, Despite Promising Buzz

With so many stars entering the cast, the show’s producers must have taken for granted that enough seats would be sold to get mia farrow brian dennehy love lettersthrough the rotating casts. However, the show never brought in more than $483,280 in a given week, which represents only 61.89% of its gross potential. The lowest achievement took place in the week ending September 28, 2014, when the show only brought in $178,812, representing only 20.15% of the gross potential. What was even more alarming is that week occurred shortly after the opening night, in which reviewers everywhere were providing free press coverage by reviewing the show. If that didn’t cause ticketbuying to pick up, then there was little hope that anything they could spend their dollars on to promote the show would have any substantial effect. The only hope would be that the later names would prove surprisingly more interesting to theatregoers than the early actors such as Mia Farrow, who apparently holds little interest for Broadway attendees. They were all waiting for Carol Burnett, Candice Bergen, or Anjelica Huston.

Hope Remains for the Touring Production

The National tour will launch in the fall of 2015, giving the production another three quarters to prepare, set tour dates, solidify casting, and partner with regional theatres. As this production was never particularly metropolitan, it should do quite well on the regional circuit, where the starry names (if they manage to get any for the tour after this Broadway fiasco) will have a great impact, perhaps greater than in New York, and where the play’s simple construct will be a draw for subscription theatres looking to fill a slot with a reliable, inexpensive play. Though it will be difficult to make back the loss incurred by the presumably completely lost Broadway capitalization, it is possible that the tour will contribute to getting the show a little less in the red, if not fully in the black. Still, this production will never prove to be the hit-and-run best case scenario they may have been hoping for.

“The Colbert Report” Plays Its Final Episode

As Colbert moves on, the Colbert Character retires

colbert characterAfter nine years and 1,447 episodes, The Colbert Report played its final show on December 18, 2014 on Comedy Central. Though Colbert fans must concede their congratulations to their beloved host, who is moving on to host CBS’ The Late Show in a post vacated by the illustrious, long-standing David Letterman, they are also sorely disappointed. That is because the reason they came to love Stephen Colbert in the first place – his fictional ultra-conservative superhero furtively promoting liberal values – is supposed to be no more. True diehards of the show cannot image losing this character, who has at times seen so vividly real – such as when he spoke in front at the White House Correspondents’ Association dinner. However, in respect to the tradition held by David Letterman for decades (as well as for the ratings he brought in), Colbert will maintain the structure of The Late Show with his opening monologue, and non-character interviews of celebrities. However, audiences are still hoping to see glimpses of this character, because it is such an effective critical tool in a world where politically sensitive topics are frighteningly becoming risqué.

The Hilarious, Worthy Finale

The screwball final 30 minutes of The Colbert Report let Colbert release his character into eternity. He gazed into the eyes of Alex colbertTrebek to discover the answers to all the world’s questions, and he passed the torch to Jon Stewart. He threatened to kill off the character through the special guest of “Grimmy”, aka Death, but then suddenly, immortality took over, and a huge group of past guests convened all together to sing “We’ll Meet Again,” foreshadowing an eerie reincarnation of a supposedly departed figure. The show has been offbeat from the beginning, and it is to Colbert’s credit that the finale was just as unlikely – he didn’t cave to normalizing commercial pressures. Although the shelf life of this show is not certain, as his topics were always so timely, his contribution to the cultural mindset is definite.

He Provided a Revolution

Colbert himself admitted that he has served as a revolutionary figure over the past few years – for after all, a revolution is turning around 360 degrees and staying where you are. His humility is touching, but he is also being truthful to say that. He always showed the world what it was; his portrayals of conservative viewpoints were so mesmerizingly accurate that he was said to have convinced conservatives that he was speaking genuinely. That may have accounted for part of his fanbase, but ultimately it was the cunning ingenuity of the construct that made him such a successful satirist over the past decade. He managed to cause sincere belly laughs at the same time as expand our intellectual points of view. Though he will continue to play this role as host of The Late Show, he will also need to inevitably cut back on his mischief. However, the finale of “We’ll Meet Again” certainly implies that the Colbert character is not gone forever – but rather, like Santa Claus, hiding in the North Pole until he is needed next.

Broadway Show Ticket Sales Analysis w/e 12/14/2014

This week’s notable movements on Broadway are:

Sting Has Helped “The Last Ship” From Sinking

The Last Ship has been struggling at the box office from the time it began previews on September 29, 2014. The new musical about a British shipyarding town with music and lyrics by the multi Grammy Award winning musician Sting has had trouble gaining traction with theatregoers. However, Sting was not going to let his beloved Ship sink without making a last ditch effort. Similar to how the citizens of the show’s town join together in one last effort to build one Last Ship, Sting has chosen to make a radical move: starting December 9, 2014, he stepped into the role of Jackie White. According to the box office in the week ending December 14, 2014, theatregoers are responding positively to this move. This past week, the show grossed $817,897, which was an increase of $325,987 from the week before. With a top ticket price of $225.00, the average paid admission was $98.79. That is a significant increase in average paid admission, which previously did not top $80.69. Furthermore, the previous highest weekly gross was only $575,155. Therefore, Sting may save the ship after all.

“The Illusionists” Made the Millionaire Club

An unusual fare for Broadway, The Illusionists: Witness the Impossible is a magic show rife with spectacle. However, it appears that ticketbuyers are drawn to this change in offering. In its first week ending November 30, 2014, the show made it past the millionaire mark, earning $1,048,858, which was 76.07% of its gross potential. The show went quickly from previews (commencing November 26, 2014) to opening night (which took place December 4, 2014), as the show needed less preview preparation than most fully staged plays and musicals. Upon reviews hitting the presses, theatregoers responded positively. Still, they have not yet made it back to the levels of that first week. In the week ending December 14, 2014, the show brought in $987,234, which was an increase of $108,818 from the week before, but still not in the millionaire’s club. Time will tell whether this magic show can make it back into the big leagues in the coming weeks.

 

The following are the Broadway ticket sales numbers for the week ending December 14, 2014:

Broadway Show Ticket Analysis w/e 12-14-14

Show Name GrossGross TotalAttn %Capacity AvgPdAdm
A DELICATE BALANCE $854,322 6,015 93.75% $142.03
A GENTLEMAN’S GUIDE TO LOVE AND MURDER $879,103 6,899 94.46% $127.42
ALADDIN $1,529,288 13,631 98.89% $112.19
BEAUTIFUL $1,354,390 8,230 100.27% $164.57
CABARET $808,669 6,858 96.00% $117.92
CHICAGO $414,484 5,112 59.17% $81.08
CINDERELLA $851,242 10,561 75.39% $80.60
DISGRACED $415,019 4,841 65.92% $85.73
HEDWIG AND THE ANGRY INCH $640,340 6,242 88.55% $102.59
HONEYMOON IN VEGAS $396,473 6,655 71.90% $59.58
IF/THEN $502,861 6,051 57.69% $83.10
IT’S ONLY A PLAY $1,413,682 8,447 98.77% $167.36
JERSEY BOYS $847,588 7,680 78.18% $110.36
KINKY BOOTS $1,295,982 10,317 90.56% $125.62
LES MISÉRABLES $719,973 7,970 70.71% $90.34
LOVE LETTERS $274,612 4,231 56.59% $64.90
MAMMA MIA! $437,209 5,298 56.80% $82.52
MATILDA $900,826 9,335 81.49% $96.50
MOTOWN THE MUSICAL $982,656 8,993 74.59% $109.27
ON THE TOWN $756,779 9,370 62.50% $80.77
ONCE $601,479 6,597 77.87% $91.17
PIPPIN $468,537 5,821 73.50% $80.49
ROCK OF AGES $376,586 4,138 88.72% $91.01
SIDE SHOW $467,909 6,467 62.04% $72.35
THE BOOK OF MORMON $1,739,667 8,751 102.61% $198.80
THE CURIOUS INCIDENT OF THE DOG IN THE NIGHT-TIME $893,577 7,572 92.98% $118.01
THE ELEPHANT MAN $934,580 6,233 100.66% $149.94
THE ILLUSIONISTS – WITNESS THE IMPOSSIBLE $987,234 9,883 77.36% $99.89
THE LAST SHIP $817,897 8,279 76.71% $98.79
THE LION KING $1,925,063 12,637 92.92% $152.34
THE PHANTOM OF THE OPERA $760,079 9,021 70.26% $84.26
THE REAL THING $456,725 5,509 93.06% $82.91
THE RIVER $865,695 5,608 100.72% $154.37
THIS IS OUR YOUTH $270,455 5,260 61.97% $51.42
WICKED $1,746,037 13,554 93.66% $128.82
YOU CAN’T TAKE IT WITH YOU $498,935 5,317 61.94% $93.84
Totals: $30,085,952 273,383 80.53% $106.47

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

“A Delicate Balance” Opens on Broadway

An Albee Masterwork with a Stellar Cast

a delicate balanceOn November 20, 2014, Edward Albee’s A Delicate Balance opened at the John Golden Theatre. Directed by Pam MacKinnon (Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?, Clybourne Park), who is known as the greatest contemporary interpreter of Albee’s works, the show has been running since its first preview on October 20, 2014. While Albee himself has solidified his status as a playwrights whose works are worth seeing, the success of this production is also due in no small part to the high stature of the cast. The lead roles of Agnes and Tobias are played by Glenn Close (Sunset Boulevard, The Real Thing) and John Lithgow (The Columnist, All My Sons) respectively, and their daughter Julia is played by Martha Plimpton (Pal Joey, Top Girls). Agnes’ alcoholic yet visionary sister Claire is played by Lindsay Duncan (Private Lives, A Midsummer Night’s Dream), and their surreally dependent friends Harry and Edna are played by Bob Balaban (Speed-the-Plow, The Inspector General) and Clare Higgins (Vincent in Brixton) respectively. In addition to the theatre credits of these actors, their pedigree extends deeply into the world of the screen, with some extremely well-known titles affixed to their names. In this richly profound and relatable play, these actors create an extremely appealing and accessible performance for theatregoers.

An Overall Positive Critical Response

Though not every reviewer was on their hands and knees bowing down to this production, several critics did present huge praise and a delicate balanceothers also saw great merit in the show. David Cote from Time Out New York calls this show a “parlor puzzler,” harking both to its accessibility taking place in the living room as well as its complex intrigue, declared the show full to bursting. Dave Quinn from NBC New York loved the show as well, especially praising Glenn Close’s triumphant return to Broadway after a 20 year hiatus. Charles McNulty of the Los Angeles Times also found the show to be a roaring success, praising the scenic design of Santo Loquasto as well as the richness of the comedic existentialist work. Ben Brantley of the New York Times was less fully sold on the production, agreeing more with critics following the 1966 premiere who were not comfortable declaring this one of Albee’s best works. Furthermore, Terry Teachout of the Wall Street Journal felt that the show is at best thought provoking but is ultimately a bit slow going, and therefore is not one of Albee’s most praiseworthy pieces. Nevertheless, the show did win the Pulitzer Prize following its 1966 production, showing that newspaper critics are not always on exactly the same page as other notable minds in the field.

A Financial Success

In the seven weeks that A Delicate Balance has been running in full eight performance weeks, is has done exceedingly well at the box office. In its first week of previews, the show was more than sold out, bringing in 102.25% of its gross potential with a gross of $884,596. Though it hasn’t done quite as well since, it has never dipped below 83.43% of the gross potential, and generally has been squarely in the 90% range. In the last recorded week – the week ending December 7, 2014 – the show brought in $873,152, representing 94.59% of its gross potential, with a top ticket price of $323.00 and an average paid admission of $143.33. This shows little to no discounting, as theatergoers are flocking to this treat of a play starring some of their favorite actors. In particular, Glenn Close must be a major draw, as she hasn’t performed live on Broadway for two decades. John Lithgow, on the other hand, was seen as recently as 2012 when he starred in The Columnist, which didn’t do quite as well financially.

Broadway Show Ticket Sales Analysis w/e 12/07/2014

This week’s notable movements on Broadway are:

“Love Letters” to Candice Bergen and Alan Alda

Love Letters has had a degree of difficulty at the box office since it began previews on September 13, 2014. One element that was difficult to navigate in terms of predicting sales trends was the unusual casting method of replacing one or both of the two characters in the play with a rotating cast of major stars. Though this is how the play has been done traditionally, it is difficult to predict how much more one star will attract ticketbuyers than the next. It appears that the duo of Candice Bergen and Alan Alda was a winner. Though it took some time for word of mouth to spread, their last week saw a surefire increase in ticket sales. In the week ending December 7, 2014, Love Letters demonstrated the highest increase in ticket sales from the week before of any show, bringing in $100,682 more than last week’s gross of $309,103. Though this gross of $409,785 was still only 52.48% of the gross potential, this is the highest week yet, almost tied with the week ending November 23, 2014 in which the same two actors played. The early pair of Mia Farrow and Brian Dennehy seemed to stir the least interest, although it is also possible that the show in general, independent of its stars, took time to gain some traction.

“This Is Our Youth” Struggling to Stay Alive

The Kenneth Lonergan scribed, Anna D. Shapiro helmed, revival of This Is Our Youth starring Michael Cera, Kieran Culkin, and Tavi Gevinson is having a lot of trouble at the box office. In the week ending December 7, 2014, the show brought in its lowest gross yet: $262,663 across eight performances. Since the show began previews on August 18, 2014, it has never made more than $421,840 in a week, which represents 54.34% of its gross potential. It has basically fluctuated around a mean gross of $300 to $350,000 per week, which is pretty dismal given the stature of the stars involved. However, though this play certainly has a boatload of indie cred, it has very little of the star power necessary to sell tickets on Broadway: that is, stars whose names resonate with the average Broadway ticket buyer, a 55 year-old woman. These young actors, as well as the material they are acting, is more suited for the youth of New York City, not tourists or middle aged adults. Unfortunately, these individuals do not generally consider Broadway in their purview or their price range, and the show is suffering for it. The show is slated to run until January 4, 2015; it will probably survive until then, but not in great financial shape.

The following are the Broadway ticket sales numbers for the week ending December 7, 2014:

Broadway Show Ticket Analysis w/e 12-07-2014

 

Show Name GrossGross TotalAttn %Capacity AvgPdAdm
A DELICATE BALANCE $873,152 6,092 94.95% $143.33
A GENTLEMAN’S GUIDE TO LOVE AND MURDER $892,158 6,882 94.22% $129.64
ALADDIN $1,516,840 13,553 98.32% $111.92
BEAUTIFUL $1,324,837 8,202 99.93% $161.53
CABARET $894,223 7,084 99.16% $126.23
CHICAGO $466,607 5,762 66.69% $80.98
CINDERELLA $805,921 9,995 71.35% $80.63
DISGRACED $410,321 4,883 66.49% $84.03
HEDWIG AND THE ANGRY INCH $610,431 6,002 85.15% $101.70
HONEYMOON IN VEGAS $410,775 7,784 84.10% $52.77
IF/THEN $546,374 6,552 62.47% $83.39
IT’S ONLY A PLAY $1,424,039 8,483 99.19% $167.87
JERSEY BOYS $913,846 7,836 79.76% $116.62
KINKY BOOTS $1,321,866 10,325 90.63% $128.03
LES MISÉRABLES $771,307 8,154 72.34% $94.59
LOVE LETTERS $409,785 4,966 66.43% $82.52
MAMMA MIA! $547,087 6,290 67.43% $86.98
MATILDA $928,149 9,285 81.05% $99.96
MOTOWN THE MUSICAL $1,065,120 9,474 78.58% $112.43
ON THE TOWN $779,021 9,116 60.81% $85.46
ONCE $554,966 6,127 72.32% $90.58
PIPPIN $464,138 5,675 71.65% $81.79
ROCK OF AGES $373,834 4,010 85.98% $93.23
SIDE SHOW $483,252 6,438 61.76% $75.06
THE BOOK OF MORMON $1,734,478 8,752 102.63% $198.18
THE CURIOUS INCIDENT OF THE DOG IN THE NIGHT-TIME $864,898 7,634 93.74% $113.30
THE ELEPHANT MAN $755,087 6,208 100.26% $121.63
THE ILLUSIONISTS – WITNESS THE IMPOSSIBLE $878,416 10,702 83.77% $82.08
THE LAST SHIP $491,910 6,338 58.73% $77.61
THE LION KING $1,919,765 12,360 90.88% $155.32
THE PHANTOM OF THE OPERA $785,441 9,112 70.97% $86.20
THE REAL THING $458,860 5,392 91.08% $85.10
THE RIVER $873,863 5,612 100.79% $155.71
THIS IS OUR YOUTH $262,663 5,247 61.82% $50.06
WICKED $1,814,918 13,954 96.42% $130.06
YOU CAN’T TAKE IT WITH YOU $519,282 5,451 63.50% $95.26
Totals: $30,147,627 275,732 81.26% $106.16

Broadway ticket sales raw data are provided courtesy of The Broadway League All other data, text, opinion, charts and commentary are copyright © 2014 nytix.com