The Playgoer: Dramas on B'way: An Update

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Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Dramas on B'way: An Update

Yes, a cold, slow time of the season. But still...

August:Osage County, 65% capacity
Is He Dead?, 47%
November, 59%
Rock 'n' Roll: 54%
Farnsworth Invention: 43%
Homecoming: 47%
Seafarer: 65%

Keep in mind these are the "hit" plays--great reviews, known playwrights (Mamet, Stoppard, Pinter, Sorkin) and, in some cases, even marquee names (Nathan Lane).

The only plays doing better than 2/3rds capacity currently are the just-opened Come Back Little Sheba at 70% (a rare hit at MTC's Biltmore) and Roundabout's 39 Steps at 85%. Given these nonprofit venues only have 650 and 740 seats respectively, though, the overall number of attendees is probably the same.

Which means that the audience for "straight plays" on Broadway right now--under optimal conditions of reviews and buzz, if not weather--looks like it's maxing out at around 500 a night.

Aaron Sorkin's Farnsworth Invention--probably the least well reviewed of that bunch--has now posted a closing notice for March 2. Seafarer's "faring" better, but they've posted, too, as if quitting while (presumably?) ahead. But that's March 31, so it's probably just to drum up sales.

In other news, while it's no surprise, Passing Strange in previews is not even at 40%.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

The farnsworth invention sucks.