The Playgoer: Raw Numbers

Custom Search

Thursday, May 31, 2007

Raw Numbers

The League of American Theaters and Producers (aka the B'way Lobby) released its annual season report this week. You're going to hear (and are already hearing) lots of headlines about "best season ever." (What, again?) Indeed, when you start selling $500 "premium seats" it certainly does wonder for those "all time grosses," don't it?

Sounds like good news when they say

Thirty-five new productions opened on Broadway during 2006-2007, including 12 new musicals, 11 new plays, 5 musical revivals, and 7 play revivals.
But then, let's not forget 17 of those 35 (yes, half) either played or originated at nonprofit companies (including in the UK). Perusing the included list also reveals that a majority of the 35 (by my count) either tanked or are tanking.

And as Crain's pointed out in their summary:
Twenty years ago, it took a Broadway show an average of 30 weeks to recoup its investments. Now the average is closer to 2 years.
Meanwhile, I can't help noticing the comic irony in the latest BO receipts showing "Jersey Boys" still selling at over 100% capacity at the "August Wilson Theatre," while August Wilson's "Radio Golf" down the street at the Cort is barely holding at 50%.

Such is the way we honor our great playwrights, I suppose...

1 comment:

Claire Downs said...

Good one. How about the irony that Spring Awakening is playing in The Eugene O'Neil Theatre. Don't know if O'Neil would approve.