Broadway’s Top 5 Moments in 2018

I know, it’s 2019 already.  But you all know I like to do things a little bit differently, so while everyone else was publishing away their listicles about their favorite moments on Broadway in 2018 over the last few weeks, I laid in the weeds.

And now you haven’t seen one in a while, so hopefully you’re jonesin’ for another.

Well, here are my Top 5 Broadway Moments of the past 12 months, in no particular order.

  1.  A Super Superstar

The live telecast of JCS couldn’t have been better if JCS had directed it himself.  Perfectly timed for its Easter airing, it pushed the art (and ratings) of the tele-musical to another level, ensuring that we’ll continue to get them for the foreseeable future.  Oh, and even if you didn’t like the telecast, I bet you found yourself saying, “Damn, I forgot how good this musical really is.”  (We lost Craig Zadan, one of the masterminds behind the production, in what was one of the worst moments in 2018. To hear his podcast with producing partner, Neil Meron, click here.)

  1. Yep, they really did that.

The fact that the totally original Broadway Musical The Prom was given a spot on NBC’s Macy’s Day Thanksgiving Day Parade was reason to celebrate all by itself . . . and then the executives let the two love interests kiss.  Spoiler alert: they were both girls, in what was the Parade’s first same-sex kiss.  And this wasn’t during prime time.  This was during FAMILY prime time.  Good for NBC for staring the social media backlash in the face and letting love win.

  1. Look what’s grossing $1mm+?  MANY plays.

The million dollar club used to be reserved for a select few touristy musicals . . .  and every Disney show.  Now, here ‘s a crop of plays demanding top dollar.  The Ferryman (at over 3 hours), Network, Lifespan of a Fact, To Kill A Mockingbird . . . and of course Harry Potter (but that doesn’t really count) . . .  are all grossin’ like musicals.  Perhaps these high flyers will mean that plays will actually start getting more theaters again, after a few years of medium-sized musicals pushing them out of playhouses.

  1. The Band’s Visit Doesn’t Win One Tony . . . It Wins 10.We all knew TBV was going to win the big prize.  But it just kept racking ’em up, award after award after award, proving once again that voters vote their ‘art’ and that there’s no such thing as a road vote.  It’s why this show won too (which also is a fave moment of mine – duh).
  1. It’s still VERY “Popular”.

Sure, sure, there’s a lot of talk about Hamilton and Dear Evan Hansen, deservedly so.  But there’s so much chatter about the new kids on the Broadway blocks that we tend to forget that Wicked has been running and raking it in for 15+ years now.  NBC didn’t forget when they gave it a huge publicity push with a 15th anniversary televised concert that reunited Idina and Kristen (only first names needed).  It was a wicked reminder that we’ve got a massive mega-hit in our backyard that could run longer than many of the newbies.  And wait until THAT movie comes out.

What was your favorite moment of 2018?  Share it below!

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Have you set your New Year’s Resolution yet?  Or maybe you did but you’ve already fallen off track?

Join me next Tuesday, January 8th at 7 PM for a one hour webinar, “How To Set New Year’s Resolutions You Stick With And Actually Accomplish.”  It’s guaranteed to help you achieve exactly what you want to achieve.  Join us here.

Broadway Grosses w/e 12/30/2018: A Smashing (New) Year!

As predicted, last year’s records were used to fuel Time Square’s confetti cannons, as each one was blown to smithereens! From Disney to British plays to American Plays, box office records were smashed and shouted from the rooftops.  All this totaled to an astonishing $57M week, which was a 15% increase over the week last year.

Among the notable records was Hamilton, crossing the $4M mark and Harry Potter grossing $2.5M, the highest for any play in Broadway history.  Life after The Boss is OK after all….

You can find the rest of the figures below, courtesy of The Broadway League:

Show Name GrossGross TotalAttn %Capacity AvgPdAdm
ALADDIN $2,584,549.00 15,545 100.01% $166.26
AMERICAN SON $706,992.20 5,847 94.43% $120.92
ANASTASIA $1,339,777.20 10,157 98.74% $131.91
BEAUTIFUL $1,018,891.20 8,734 94.59% $116.66
CHICAGO $1,247,276.97 9,737 100.17% $128.10
CHOIR BOY $258,753.50 4,428 86.89% $58.44
COME FROM AWAY $1,675,276.50 9,613 102.11% $174.27
DEAR EVAN HANSEN $1,932,472.00 7,997 101.59% $241.65
FROZEN $2,624,495.00 13,449 99.83% $195.14
HAMILTON $4,041,493.00 10,766 101.87% $375.39
HARRY POTTER AND THE CURSED CHILD, PARTS ONE AND TWO $2,525,850.00 12,976 100.00% $194.66
HEAD OVER HEELS $383,200.00 6,396 73.80% $59.91
KING KONG $1,847,782.02 14,878 95.12% $124.20
KINKY BOOTS $1,332,384.95 11,566 90.25% $115.20
MEAN GIRLS $1,994,386.00 9,901 101.03% $201.43
MY FAIR LADY $1,549,407.00 8,494 99.32% $182.41
NETWORK $1,367,012.84 8,201 101.00% $166.69
ONCE ON THIS ISLAND $757,809.70 5,742 103.13% $131.98
PRETTY WOMAN: THE MUSICAL $1,266,709.20 8,925 95.52% $141.93
SCHOOL OF ROCK $1,757,095.50 13,824 100.85% $127.10
SUMMER $1,094,723.00 10,343 78.18% $105.84
THE BAND’S VISIT $1,045,860.30 8,907 95.25% $117.42
THE BOOK OF MORMON $1,926,329.00 9,839 104.41% $195.79
THE CHER SHOW $1,373,614.00 9,957 90.19% $137.95
THE FERRYMAN $1,037,447.40 7,885 96.72% $131.57
THE ILLUSIONISTS – MAGIC OF THE HOLIDAYS $2,978,348.70 21,950 83.75% $135.69
THE LIFESPAN OF A FACT $1,062,802.80 8,665 95.89% $122.65
THE LION KING $3,696,974.00 15,267 100.02% $242.15
THE NEW ONE $464,061.00 5,655 65.88% $82.06
THE PHANTOM OF THE OPERA $2,091,530.26 14,289 98.92% $146.37
THE PLAY THAT GOES WRONG $623,414.00 6,650 97.34% $93.75
THE PROM $936,581.60 8,876 94.38% $105.52
THE WAVERLY GALLERY $462,999.50 6,189 87.38% $74.81
TO KILL A MOCKINGBIRD $1,701,683.59 11,672 101.67% $145.79
TORCH SONG $244,596.00 3,309 70.71% $73.92
TRUE WEST $278,726.90 2,906 98.18% $95.91
WAITRESS $1,000,718.20 8,527 90.66% $117.36
WICKED $3,411,819.00 17,334 100.00% $196.83
TOTALS $57,807,272.33 378,910 92.73% $141.59
+/- THIS WEEK LAST SEASON +$7,53,159.98      


Today’s blog was guest-written by Ryan Conway, General Manager for DTE Management. Find out more here!

Broadway Grosses w/e 12/23/2018: The Holiday Wind Up

The penultimate week of the year typically bears gifts and this year did not disappoint.  Despite many shows choosing to play seven performances this week (and nine in the following week), grosses inched up about $1M to a total of $41M.  The average paid ticket price for all shows was a healthy $134.

Expect next week’s gross to break more records as Broadway wraps up another banner year.

Happy holidays, everyone!

You can find the rest of the figures below, courtesy of The Broadway League:

Show Name GrossGross TotalAttn %Capacity AvgPdAdm
ALADDIN $1,752,473.40 13,585 98.33% $129.00
AMERICAN SON $555,073.76 4,635 74.85% $119.76
ANASTASIA $854,240.60 7,886 86.24% $108.32
BEAUTIFUL $596,233.00 5,443 66.31% $109.54
CELEBRITY AUTOBIOGRAPHY $65,859.00 1,384 84.49% $47.59
CHICAGO $624,418.81 6,109 80.81% $102.21
CHOIR BOY $172,471.00 4,187 82.16% $41.19
COME FROM AWAY $1,068,405.70 7,471 102.03% $143.01
DEAR EVAN HANSEN $1,642,987.55 7,991 101.51% $205.60
FROZEN $2,109,577.00 13,317 98.85% $158.41
HAMILTON $3,612,858.00 10,755 101.77% $335.92
HARRY POTTER AND THE CURSED CHILD, PARTS ONE AND TWO $2,228,592.00 12,976 100.00% $171.75
HEAD OVER HEELS $206,949.25 3,656 47.46% $56.61
KING KONG $1,114,273.75 11,075 79.65% $100.61
KINKY BOOTS $669,673.05 6 673 66.94% $100.36
MEAN GIRLS $1,589,811.20 9 846 100.47% $161.47
MY FAIR LADY $1,106,045.00 7,261 84.90% $152.33
NETWORK $1,211,044.35 8,081 99.52% $149.86
ONCE ON THIS ISLAND $534,169.80 5,519 99.12% $96.79
PRETTY WOMAN: THE MUSICAL $1,011,053.80 7,992 85.53% $126.51
SCHOOL OF ROCK $988,509.70 9,567 78.52% $103.32
SUMMER $492,604.00 5,761 55.99% $85.51
THE BAND’S VISIT $731,625.84 6,843 82.33% $106.92
THE BOOK OF MORMON $1,365,850.50 8,672 103.53% $157.50
THE CHER SHOW $1,122,055.40 8,793 79.65% $127.61
THE FERRYMAN $791,861.20 6,160 75.56% $128.55
THE ILLUSIONISTS – MAGIC OF THE HOLIDAYS $1,439,258.20 13,425 91.07% $107.21
THE LIFESPAN OF A FACT $839,865.50 6,787 84,50% $123,75
THE LION KING $2,761,271.00 13,560 99,94% $203,63
THE NEW ONE $323,354.54 4,530 52.77% $71.38
THE PHANTOM OF THE OPERA $1,345,228.54 12,305 95.83% $109.32
THE PLAY THAT GOES WRONG $380,378.14 5,286 77.37% $71.96
THE PROM $583,380.70 6,363 76.11% $91.68
THE WAVERLY GALLERY $363,740.00 5,174 82.18% $70.30
TO KILL A MOCKINGBIRD $1,586,946.02 11,644 101.43% $136.29
TORCH SONG $217,970.00 2,992 63.93% $72.85
WAITRESS $547,519.00 5,350 73.14% $102.34
WICKED $2,264,992.00 15,340 99.56% $147.65
TOTALS $41,012,369.65 308,489 83.56% $119.71
+/- THIS WEEK LAST SEASON +$5,216,156.35      

Today’s blog was guest-written by Ryan Conway, General Manager for DTE Management. Find out more here!

My 5 Friday Finds: Hello Trello

Happy last working Friday of 2018!  (I know we’ve got another Friday to go, but it seems like the entire world is taking off next week, so if you’ve got business to do before the end of the year, I’d pick up that phone!)

  1. Hello to Trello

I love productivity tools.  I love them so much, that sometimes researching them and implementing them gets in the way of my productivity.  🙂

But not this one.

Trello is a like Basecamp but cooler.  It’s a visual way to keep all your projects in front of you on “boards” and “cards.”  And if you collaborate with folks, you can assign tasks and keep track of what everyone is up to.

I’ve got boards for my creative projects, my biz projects, and more.

Takes a beat to set up, but already it’s helping me make sure nothing falls through the cracks, and that I get more done towards my goals.

  1. Are your New Year’s Resolutions set yet?

Setting a good set of resolutions is a science.  Did you know that 80% of resolutions fail by February?

That’s why we’re doing something about it.  Click here to learn more.

  1. Fosse/Verdon

Everyone’s buzzin’ about the next attempt at a TV show about our world, especially since it contains so many Broadway peeps, from Norbert Leo Butz to Laura Osnes to Gettin’ The Band Back Together’s Kelli Barrett.

No release date yet for the FX show, but anything on television that has the word Broadway in it is good for the industry.  #ContentMarketing

  1. Someone at the NY Times actually LIKES jukebox musicals.

Interesting article from a female reviewer about a jukebox musical about a female.  Read here.

  1. Another show goes from Broadway to Off.  And it’s one of mine!

In the tradition of Avenue Q (now closing on April 28th), The Play That Goes Wrong, which I produce, will close on Broadway on January 6th and then REOPEN Off-Broadway at New World Stages on Feb 11th.  See here!

Happy to see this model continue (I blogged about it way back here) and hope it goes all WRONG.

Enjoy the weekend, folks, and your week off as well.  If you’re looking to see a show this coming week, remember, it’s the busiest time of year on Broadway, so get tickets now.  Especially to THIS ONE.

Oh, and fyi, this Blog will be on vacation next week as well, so don’t get all worried if you don’t see a post 🙂

We’re having a Theater Maker Social . . . in LONDON!

One of my goals in 2019 is to learn more about the hard-working people who make theater and the people who dream about making theater all over this world.

So, during my next trip to jolly old Londontown on Tuesday, January 15th, from 6:00 PM – 7:30 PM, I’m having a Theater Maker Social!

Thanks to my friends at The Really Useful Group, The Social will be held at “The Other Palace”, Andrew Lloyd Webber’s theater, which is dedicated to supporting new theatremakers and giving them a home.  (And they’ve got a great bar and some snappy apps.)

And the first drink is on me!

So, whether you’re a Writer, Producer, Actor, Designer, whatever, you’re also a Theater Maker.  And I want to meet you and hear about what it’s like to make theater in London or wherever on that continent you come from (Hey you Frenchians – you’re like an hour and a half away by chunnel – so come on down).  Maybe we can even come up with some ideas on how to help you make more theater and faster.

Or maybe when you come, you’ll meet a new collaborator or re-meet an old one.

One thing I know for sure, when passionate Theater Makers get in a room (and a bar qualifies as a room), good stuff happens.  Every single time.

And I guarantee some good stuff at this social.

So come to our London Theater Maker social and network, brainstorm, say hello to me and put a drink on my tab.

See you there!

(OH!  You MUST RSVP.  We’ve got a limited amount of space and we’ve got a lot of Pros in the area already so only people on the list will be admitted.  Sign up now. And tell your friends to do the same.)

Here are the details:

Ken Davenport’s Theater Maker Social
Tuesday, January 15th
6 PM – 7:30 PM
The Other Gin Palace – Foyer Bar Area
12 Palace Street
London, England

RSVPs a MUST.  You are not confirmed until you get an email saying “You’re in!”