Who said there are a limited # of theaters in Times Square?
The current Broadway theater crunch has got everyone thinking about what to do with the next set of shows coming down the pike. If Broadway was JFK airport, there would be at least 20-30 planes circling, waiting for the Air Traffic Controllers (aka the Theater Owners) to call them in for a landing.
But for a lot of people, especially the younger generation of Producers and Writers, waiting for “permission” to land your show isn’t going to cut it.
Generation T (for “Tomorrow”) has already started creating shows for alternative spaces (Natasha, Pierre and the Great Comet of 1812, Queen of the Night, Then She Fell, and yep, even I’ve got a new show for the spring that won’t need a theater owner’s blessing to open) . . . and I’d expect this trend to continue. Especially when there are unlimited venues in the heart of midtown just waiting for creative geniuses to fill them.
What exactly am I talking about?
Let’s back up for a second . . .
Somewhere in the annals of this blog I wrote an article about the unrealized potential of Broadway theaters. You see, the average show is around 2.5 hours long. Add in 1.5 hours of prep before hand, and ½ an hour of “out” time after, and the total use of the theater is 4.5 hours a day, or about 36 hours a week. Add a 4 hour rehearsal (maybe) and you’re up to 40 hours a week. A week has 168 hours. That means that shows use only approximately 21.43% of the week! And the rest of that week sits dark. And depressing.
What’s amazing about this stat is that this real estate that is sitting there unused 78.57% of the time is some of the most expensive real estate in the world! Crazy, right? I’d love to see some of this time get programmed with miscellaneous stuff. But that’s not what this blog is about.
This blog is about a similar amount of unrealized potential, and where I think the next immersive show is bound to take place. You see, the office that you might be working in right now is busy from 9 – 7. And shows start at about 8. And there are thousands and thousands of offices in the heart of midtown that are all dark right at the peak performance time for live entertainment.
I’m predicting that the next immersive theatrical production will be in a corporate office. Or two. Or three.
Imagine a Mad Men like experience on Madison Avenue. Or a show about sweat shops in the garment district.
The possibilities and the venues are endless. And it will happen. Because the Producers and Writers coming of age right now are part of the video game generation. And they like to be “in” their shows. And they also don’t like to be told by their parents that they can’t “play.”
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