Despite competition from afternoon football programming on Sept. 10, the WNBC debut broadcast of the annual theatre season opener, Broadway on Broadway scored a 3.0 rating/8 share, which means some 508,000 viewers saw the annual Times Square preview.
WNBC, New York's Channel 4, said the broadcast easily led the ratings race in its time slot. WNBC aired Broadway on Broadway on Sept. 10, 12 - 2 PM. The event was also webcast live on the Internet at Earthcam.com.
In a statement, League of American Theatres and Producers president Jed Bernstein described the event as "a knockout on television," and added, "There's no greater way to get the word out about the great performances happening every day on Broadway."
NBC weatherman Al Roker hosted the festivities.
The artists and production numbers that performed at "Broadway on Broadway" included: • Cheryl Ladd and Patrick Cassidy
“Anything You Can Do...” from Annie Get Your Gun
• Lea Thompson
“Cabaret” from Cabaret
• Jasmine Guy and Charlotte D’Amboise
“My Own Best Friend” from Chicago
• Claudia Shear, Bob Stillman and Tom Riis Farrell
“Dirty Blonde” from Dirty Blonde
•Shannon Lewis, Ken Alan, and Byron Easley
“I Gotcha” from Fosse
“This is the Moment” from Jekyll & Hyde
• J. Mark McVey
“Bring Him Home” from Les Misérables
•Melinda Chua and Michael Flanigan
“Last Night of the World” from Miss Saigon
• Trey Ellett and Manley Pope
“What You Own” from RENT
• Margaret Motsage, Brian Kennedy and chorus
“Endless Journey” from Riverdance
• Paige Price and Orfeh
“Nights on Broadway” from Saturday Night Fever
• Ann Hampton Callaway
“Blues in the Night” from Swing!
"Broadway on Broadway" was the first chance for the public to see numbers from the upcoming Broadway musicals The Full Monty, Jane Eyre and The Rocky Horror Show and the last chance to see a number from Cats, which closed that afternoon. Sponsored by Continental Airlines and American Express, "Broadway on Broadway" is produced by the League of American Theatres and Producers and the Times Square Business Improvement District in association with the Recording Industries Music Performance Trust Funds, in cooperation with Local 802, American Federation of Musicians.
-- By Murdoch McBride