Proof Is Longest Running Broadway Play in Two Decades

News   Proof Is Longest Running Broadway Play in Two Decades 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.

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).  

 

  • Life With Father 3224
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  • Tobacco Road 3182
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  • Abie's Irish Rose 2327
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  • Deathtrap 1793
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  • Gemini 1788
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  • Harvey 1775
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  • Born Yesterday 1642
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  • Mary, Mary 1572
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  • The Voice of the Turtle 1557
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  • Barefoot in the Park 1530
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  • Brighton Beach Memoirs 1530
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  • Arsenic and Old Lace 1444
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  • Mummenschanz 1326
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  • Angel Street 1295
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  • Lightnin' 1291
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  • Sleuth 1222
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  • Torch Song Trilogy 1222
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  • Equus 1209
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  • The Seven Year Itch 1141
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  • Butterflies Are Free 1128
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  • Plaza Suite 1097
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  • The Teahouse of the August Moon 1027
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  • Never Too Late 1007
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  • Any Wednesday 982
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  • The Odd Couple 964
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  • Anna Lucasta 957
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  • Kiss and Tell 956
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  • Dracula (Revival) 925
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  • The Moon Is Blue 924
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  • The Elephant Man 916
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  • Luv 901
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  • I'm Not Rappaport 890
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  • Children of a Lesser God 887
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  • The Bat 867
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  • My Sister Eileen 864
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  • Chapter Two 857
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  • A Streetcar Named Desire 855
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  • Comedy in Music 849
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  • You Can't Take It With You 837
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  • Three Men on a Horse 835
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  • The Subject Was Roses 832
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  • Inherit the Wind 806
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  • Proof 804