Broadway Box Office Analysis, July 13-19: Hamilton's Finally Here, and Its House Is Packed

News   Broadway Box Office Analysis, July 13-19: Hamilton's Finally Here, and Its House Is Packed
Playbill's new weekly feature examines the box-office trends of the past week.


Hamilton, the smash downtown rap musical about the titular Founding Father, finally opened on Broadway at the Richard Rodgers this week, putting in seven previews. Any doubts about it doing well on the bigger stage were immediately eliminated as it played to capacity crowds and took in 110.3% of the potential box office. The latter was the best such number on The Street. The total gross was $1,228,436 and the average ticket price was $138.94.

Fun Home — another Off-Broadway musical that began at the Public Theater — was just under Hamilton, with an average ticket price of $133.94. The show enjoyed its best week ever on Broadway, grossing $817,664.80 (103.38% of its potential), and played to capacity houses.

Whether it was clever viral marketing, or advantageous use of inappropriate audience behavior, the new American play Hand to God didn't see a major box office uptick from all the national press it received after an audience member attempted to charge his cell phone in an on-stage electrical outlet. The week after the incident, the box office actually dipped by $82,000 (taking in $317,244), while only increasing to $344,030 this past week. The best week ever for the production, which garnered strong critical reviews, was the week of the Tony Awards, when it brought in $449,227 (playing to 88.75 percent capacity.) Amazing Grace, the musical about the guy who wrote the title tune, opened this past week to middling reviews. Its seats during that week were 75% full, and it collected 29% of its gross.

The Lion King bested The Book of Mormon in the average ticket price department for the second week in a row. The Disney musical commanded $173.51 a ducat, while the show from the "South Park" folks ranked $168.31 a ticket. That said, Mormon did better in terms of percentage of seats occupied and percentage of box office. The Lion King was just below the 100 mark on both counts.

A few shows, including Wicked, The Lion King and The Book of Mormon, put in nine performances last week and thus registered big leaps at the box office over the previous week. One show that managed that trick without upping the performance count was Hedwig and the Angry Inch, whose monies increased $147,149 over the previous week, bringing overall box-office take to 92%.

But it was a very healthy week across Broadway in general, with very few shows registering a dip from the previous week, and most showing very robust jumps in income. More than the usual number were sell-outs — Aladdin, Fun Home, Hamilton, Mamma Mia!, On the Twentieth Century, The Book of Mormon — and many others dwells in the high- and mid-90s, percentage-wise.

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