In an era when a "hit" Broadway play typically runs about nine months to a year, David Auburn's long-running Proof harkens back to a Broadway where straight dramas, comedies and thrillers often ran as long as musicals. When the work closes at the Walter Kerr Theatre on Jan. 5, 2003, it will have played 918 performances and 16 previews.
The most recent play to have had a longer run was Harvey Fierstein's Torch Song Trilogy, which opened at the Little Theatre in 1982 and lasted 1,222 performances.
By comparison, some of the most successful Broadway plays of the past decade include The Tale of the Allergist's Wife (777 performances), Art (600 performances) and Lost in Yonkers (780 performances).
For the monster hits of history, however, you still have to go back to titles of the '20s and '30s like Tobacco Road, Life With Father and Abie's Irish Rose.
Below are the standings for number of performances of non-musical Broadway titles (Proof is the only one still currently running).