The front page concluded with a strong week, and Broadway overall is beginning to show some signs of life as the spring season is upon us.

Industry Picking Up Steam From Last Week’s Low

jitneyIn the week ending January 29, 2017, Broadway is beginning to show signs of re-enlivening following the slump of the winter. This past week, the industry had a total of 21 shows running, which is one fewer than the week before (given that Oh, Hello closed), and it is an astonishing 9 fewer than the equivalent week the year before. This is a combined result of the fact that many long-running shows have recently wrapped up their runs (such as Jersey Boys and Matilda), and the fact that the spring season has not yet gotten underway. Of the 21 shows that were running this past week, the collective gross was a total of $21,078,313, which is an increase of $1,003,729 from the week before. Among these, 15 increased from the week before, and 6 decreased. The biggest increase was seen by August Wilson’s Jitney making its Broadway debut after many years, which went up by $110,925 from the week before, bringing it to a weekly gross of $381,606, or 48.72% of its gross potential. While a long way off from profitability, that show is finally beginning to gain some traction. The next biggest increase was seen by On Your Feet!, which went up by $44,746 to reach a weekly gross of $728,188. Next was The Front Page in its final week, which went up by $36,297 to reach a final weekly gross of $1,073,605. In addition, Paramour increased by $32,516 to reach a weekly gross of $935,804, and Waitress went up by $28,977 to reach a weekly gross of $818,648. Meanwhile, the biggest decrease was seen by Wicked, which went down by $98,230 to reach a weekly gross of $1,511,001, or 84.9% of its gross potential. All in all, these changes were negligible, demonstrating that the slow climb to the spring season is as of yet gradual.

“The Front Page” Has a Strong Final WeekThe Front Page Marquee at the Broadhurst Theatre

The first play of the season to announce recoupment, The Front Page concluded performances on January 29, 2017. In its final week, it saw an increase of $36,297 to reach a weekly gross of $1,073,605, which represents 80.5% of its gross potential. With a top ticket price of $373, the average paid admission was $113.39, and the audience was filled up to 100.5% on average across the eight performances. Throughout the run, the best week was the week ending November 27, 2016, when the weekly gross was $1,306,273 across eight performances, which represented 96.21% of gross potential. The Thanksgiving holiday was a lucrative one for this ensemble comedy, when the mood was chipper and the weather was still welcoming. The best week in terms of percentage reached of gross potential was the week ending October 16, 2016, when the weekly gross was $1,278,807, which represented 100.49% of its gross potential. While the top ticket price was the same that week - $373 – the prices across the theatre must have been lower. Once demand was ascertained, the producers took advantage of dynamic pricing models to increase the prices of tickets throughout the theatre, thus making the percentage reached of gross potential lower in comparison to the earlier week, even though the gross was higher. In any case, The Front Page was a successful run both commercially and critically, and it will earn some money for its investors, which is a rare feat indeed for a straight play in a limited run on Broadway.