In an effort to attract families to New York theatre during the winter months — a time when ticket sales generally slump — several Broadway shows began offering a 7 PM curtain time (Tuesday evenings only) Jan. 7. Originally scheduled through March 25, the program will be extended, a spokesperson for the initiative confirmed. Although details are not yet available, several other productions are expected to join the program.
Those shows already offering a 7 PM curtain on Tuesdays include Aida, Beauty and the Beast, Cabaret, Chicago, Def Poetry Jam, Flower Drum Song, 42nd Street, Les Misérables, Ma Rainey's Black Bottom, Man of La Mancha, Movin' Out, Take Me Out, The Graduate, The Lion King, The Phantom of the Opera, Thoroughly Modern Millie and Urinetown.
Chris Boneau, of Boneau/Bryan-Brown, told Playbill On-Line last year, "The idea was to encourage people to come to the theatre on Tuesday nights . . . to drive [what is traditionally] a lower-attended evening of theatre. The research shows that people would really go to the theatre on a night if they didn't always have to go at eight o'clock. Unfortunately, we're not like London, where you check the paper to see what time the curtain times are [because] they're wildly different. People are so accustomed to eight o'clock curtains . . . so the idea was to get a lot of shows involved."
Boneau explained, "Both Roundabout and Manhattan Theatre Club have early curtain evenings, and they're very popular. So, it's not a brand-new idea, it's just an idea that's new to Broadway. What it requires is a marketing effort behind it, so that everyone's not running around Times Square not knowing what time to be there . . . That's why we're calling it 'Tuesdays at 7.'"
For more information about the program, visit www.tuesdaysat7.com.