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Speaking of Britain, how’s the Business?

I always report on the end of year figures for Broadway, and even give you the quarterly reports as well (stay tuned for next week’s 3rd Quarter results, which I expect to be fascinating).  And since I picked on Great Britain yesterday, I thought I owed them a little love today . . . so why not take a look at how they’re doing?

Just a couple of weeks ago, SOLT (the Society of London Theatre), the British equivalent of the Broadway League, announced their year end figures, and by George, it’s good news.

  • The Gross Box Office tally for 2014 came in at £623.6 million (which is $957.4 million in our bucks), which is an increase of a giant sized 7%.
  • Attendance was 14.7 million peeps, which was a 1% increase from 2013.

Compare that to our 2014 tally, which was $1.362 billion and 13.3 million people.

Huh.  We made more money.  But we had less bodies.

And that sure is a sign of our different economies, now isn’t it?

See, we’ve gotten great at getting more cash out of our consumers, even though it might be costing us bodies.  That’s great for the short term, but more bodies today would mean even more bucks tomorrow (nothing beats audience development like getting people into the theaters to see shows).

So even though our pockets may be stuffed with more cash, I’m a little green with envy over the UK figures.

Because sometimes it’s better to take a short term hit for a long term gain.

But I’m nitpicking – because the real (happy) conclusion of this blog is that gross and attendance is up on both sides of the pond . . . which means theater worldwide is on the upswing.

Take that Netflix.

Streamin’s got nothing on us.


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