Broadway Box-Office Analysis: August 8-14

Box Office   Broadway Box-Office Analysis: August 8-14 The Humans returned to the boards with greater attendance but not the same box-office strength, and Cats showed staying power.
Cassie Beck, Arian Moayed, Reed Birney, Jayne Houdyshell, Lauren Klein and Sarah Steele in <i>The Humans</i>
Cassie Beck, Arian Moayed, Reed Birney, Jayne Houdyshell, Lauren Klein and Sarah Steele in The Humans Joan Marcus

The Humans returned to the boards this week after a break. The Tony-winning play may need a few weeks to see if it can fill its new home, the Schoenfeld, which has nearly twice as many seats as its previous residence, the Hayes. However, early signs are guardedly optimistic.

Attendance was at 87 percent capacity, which is considerably less than when the play was at the Hayes, where it was often close to selling out. However, the head count was an encouraging 7,234 for the week, which is roughly 50 percent greater than its recent weekly attendance at the Hayes. It’s possible the play may grow into its larger digs.

As for monies, the play took in 62 percent of the potential gross, which is also much lower than the usual figures at the Hayes. Average ticket price was down as well.

In these dog days of August, business was average across Broadway, with overall box office at $24,414,933—not much different than the week before, despite the addition of The Humans. Hamilton and The Book of Mormon were the only shows to sell out and bring in an excess of 100 percent at the box office.

Les Misérables continued to be a popular draw at the Imperial, nearly selling out and earning 83 percent of its box office potential. Another long-runner, Wicked, showed great strength, playing just below capacity, and all but earning 100 percent of the potential gross. The Lion King was similarly healthy.

With only one week more to go at the Lunt-Fontanne, the musical Finding Neverland did decent business, taking in $628,895, slightly better than the previous week, and filled 73 percent of the seats.

The new revival of Cats is showing decent staying power. Despite mixed to poor reviews a couple of weeks ago, it held steady at the Neil Simon, playing to 94 percent capacity, and taking in 78 percent of the grow. It’s still early in the run, but the show may prove critic-proof. After all, the original wasn’t a critics’ darling, and it did just fine.

Cumulative box office for the season to date was $319,933,816, which was $9 million behind last year’s numbers at this time of year. This, despite the fact that the shows this season have had 369 playing weeks—21 more than last season at this juncture.

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