Broadway Box-Office Analysis, Sept. 23-29, 2013

By Robert Simonson
October 1, 2013

Playbill's newest weekly feature examines the box-office trends of the past week.

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The John Tiffany production of Tennessee Williams' The Glass Menagerie, starring Cherry Jones, opened this week on Broadway to rave reviews, and the box office bounced in response. Over three previews and five regular performances, the revival played to 95% capacity audiences, while the box office increased its take from the previous week by $87,000, the steepest jump of any show that had played a full week of performances. Those numbers should climb in weeks to come; the New York Times reported that the production took in $487,000 last Friday, $276,000 on Saturday and $188,000 on Sunday. Top ticket price is currently $86.80. That figure, too, is likely to rise.

New on the block was the John Grisham thriller A Time to Kill. Its single preview commanded an auditorium that was 97% full. Box office stood at nearly 60% its potential. Romeo and Juliet, which got middling reviews, slumped to 57% capacity, selling only 36% of its possible gross.

A Night With Janis Joplin did decently in its first full week of previews, running to houses that were 81% full. Another musical still in previews, Big Fish, played to 92% capacity crowds and 56% of its box-office potential. The show opens Oct. 6.

The Book of Mormon and Kinky Boots continued a pattern which has proven the norm of late: When all other shows fail to do so, these two routinely sell out and either meet or exceed their box-office potential. Whether Kinky continues to have the staying power Mormon has shown remains to be seen, but it's looking hearty for the time being.

Overall, numbers remained fairly steady, with the box office across Broadway going slightly down and the audience numbers slightly up.