How do you make your show recession proof?


Make it great.

There’s a lot of talk in town these days about whether or not Broadway and Off-Broadway will be affected by our “current economic climate.”  (don’t you love that phrase?  Climate.  Ooooooh.  It’s so . . . weatherly.)

One producer even said to me . . . “Man, if only it was like last summer.”

Well, let’s take a quick look at this summer as compared to last summer.

The last four weeks of grosses this summer had 6 members of the million dollar gross club.

Over the same four week cycle last year?  Three weeks had only 5 members and one week had 6.

The great are doing even greater.

So, are the $12 gallons of gas and the thousands of foreclosures around the country affecting this little corner of the country?  Of course . . . we’ve seen at least two big shows pull the plug before taking the plunge.  And there are even rumors of another.  But before you panic, take a look at those shows . . . do you think the market was really craving either one?

During droughts or famines, it’s unfortunately the less fortunate that are to go first.

So don’t waste your time worrying about whether or not this is the right time to do a show, or the wrong time to do a show, etc.  Market timing, in the stock market or in the show market, is never a smart thing.  There are some stocks that are soaring right now . . . and there are shows that will soar as well.

Whether yours will be one of them or not only depends on one thing.

How great it is.

And getting it great is always your charge, no matter what kind of climate we’re in.

  • Gil says:

    Ken, as much as I wholly agree with you, you’re avoiding one big piece of the issue: the investors.
    I’m not talking about whether a show will break even or at least be artistically successful. I’m talking about today’s Post article about not being able to find the money for the Godspell production that was supposed to hit Broadway this fall.
    The issue with these terms like “current economic climate” isn’t about whether a good show will do well, it’s about the perceived notion that the investors have…
    (Of course, you could slay the whole thing if you insist that, say, the Godspell revival was looking to go right down the crapper quality-wise; I know nothing about this)

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