Broadway Box-Office Analysis, Feb. 2-8: Larry David's Fish In the Dark Is a Hot Ticket

News   Broadway Box-Office Analysis, Feb. 2-8: Larry David's Fish In the Dark Is a Hot Ticket
Larry David’s new comedy Fish In the Dark began performances at the Cort Theatre last week, and—no surprise, since the show has been setting box-offices records since it went on sale—every one of the seven previews played to capacity houses.

The box-office draw was 113.39% of the possible gross, collecting just under $1 million. That made it the new champion on the block, easily beating out the box-office performances of The Book of Mormon and The Elephant Man.

The average ticket price for Fish—which also stars David, as well as a host of other notable actors—was $130.95. That was the second-highest average ticket price for a straight play on Broadway, after Elephant, which drew $155.12 a ticket on average. The top premium ticket price for Fish is $423, a price of admission that is only bested by Mormon, where the ceiling stops at $475. All told, the David play will certainly continue the tradition set early in this Broadway season of straight plays (It’s Only a Play, Elephant Man, The River, Constellations) being the hottest tickets in town.

A previous box-office king, The River starring Hugh Jackman, closed its run at Circle in the Square last week. Its final week was a good one, enjoying full houses and drawing 80% of the potential box office.

The three above-mentioned shows were the only attractions to play to capacity last week. Coming within striking distance were the popular new play Constellations and Cabaret, which still has Emma Stone in the lead.

After being on hiatus for a week, the Idina Menzel-starred If/Then was back in business at the Richard Rodgers: 70% of the seats were occupied, and the gross was just 44% of the potential. Average ticket price was $74. The addition to the boards of Fish and If/Then brought the number of shows on Broadway up to 27. The overall box office climbed from $17,504,766 last week to $18,766,304 this week, an increase of more than $1 million.

A number of shows suffered a slip at the box office last week. Suffering in particular was the revival of On the Town. The well-reviewed show, never registering much in ticket sales, was last week playing to houses that were just 36% full. Box-office draw was a paltry 21% of the possible. These were the lowest numbers on the Street.

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