The Manischewitz hangovers of the Passover/Easter holiday faded last week, but the party kept going strong on Broadway. While most shows grossed less in the first week of April than they did the last week of March, six shows actually managed to boost their revenues, including Ann, The Assembled Parties, and The Book of Mormon. 255,957 people took in a Broadway show last week, down from the 269,430 of the previous week, which saw added performances and capacity houses for the holiday. The average price for a Broadway ticket was $94.69, down $2.24 from last week, but still $3.52 more than the week before that (March 17-24), suggesting that there is a direct correlation between Broadway ticket prices and the frequency one hears French or German spoken in Times Square. The tourist season is nigh.
Here are the top ten average paid admissions on Broadway:
1. The Book of Mormon: $194.86
2. Wicked: $157.94
3. The Lion King: $153.04
4. I'll Eat You Last: A Chat With Sue Mengers: $133.78
5. Lucky Guy: $127.66
6. Once: $114.80
7. Newsies: $113.61
8. Jersey Boys: $112.76
9. The Phantom of the Opera: $108.69
10. Spider-Man: Turn Off The Dark: $107.13
The Book of Mormon is still the hottest ticket on Broadway and it is reasonable to anticipate its average paid admission breaking the $200 barrier sometime this year. Obviously, having the top ticket price does not directly translate into being the highest-grossing show (a position firmly held by Wicked, which brought in $2,257,034 last week compared to BOM's $1,705,678). While I'll Eat You Last is charging the fourth-highest average admission, it premiered at number 25 on the top-grossing list, owing to its relatively small house (the 782-seat Booth Theater) and the fact that it only started previews last week, playing just three performances. Still, if audiences keep paying upwards of $130 a ticket to see Bathhouse Betty make her return to Broadway after a three-decade absence, expect the show to climb in the overall rankings. Of the ten shows listed above, seven appear on the highest-grossing top ten.
In total, Broadway took in $25,899,686 last week. With every show of the spring season now open or in previews, expect fierce competition for Broadway audience dollars, even as the overall pie is likely to grow with the arrival of more out-of-towners.
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