The week after Labor Day traditionally marks a decline at the box office for many Broadway shows. But this year, the decline was decidedly more pronounced and steeper than a year ago.
Last year at this time, five shows were playing to less than 50% capacity. Compare that to this year where just one show -- The Producers -- is playing to less than 50% capacity and you'd think that all is well on Broadway. But drill down a little deeper on the information and you'll find that in the last week, eight major hit shows have plummeted by 20% or more in capacity from one week to the next (no show dropped by more than 20% last year). The biggest drops came from:
- Hairspray -- dropping a whopping 35% to 52.9% capacity
- Rent -- dropping 26.7% to 54% capacity
- The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee -- dropping 26.6% to 68% capacity
- Monty Python's Spamalot -- dropping 25.3% to 75.3% capacity
- The Lion King -- dropping 24.4% to 69.6% capacity
- The Phantom Of The Opera -- dropping 23.2% to 65.9% capacity
- Avenue Q -- dropping 21.7% to 77.1% capacity
- Beauty And The Beast -- dropping 20% to 70.2% capacity
Will the same trend manifest itself this year? Or are the celebrated runs for shows like Hairspray, Rent and The Producers nearly over?
This is Steve On Broadway (SOB).