Tourism And Tonys Up The Ante On Broadway

Pippin‘ tops $1 million as ‘Kinky Boots‘ and ‘Matilda’ reap post-kudocast gains
Gordon Cox
Legit Editor

USA: Bette Midler's 12th Annual Spring Picnic

Summer tourism and the PR boost of the Tony Awards combined to land 11 Broadway shows in the millionaires’ club last week, with the four trophies scored by “Pippin” helping that revival to break the $1 million barrier for the first time.

The $1,009,392 logged by “Pippin” reps a particularly strong showing for a show playing in a venue with only 990 seats, the smallest of any show that grossed more than $1 million last week. The production had already been gaining momentum, but it was no doubt helped along by the June 9 Tonycast showcasing the title’s four wins (including one for musical revival) as well as a performance seg from the production.

“Kinky Boots” ($1,474,349), which sashayed away with six honors including the coveted new tuner title, logged its best numbers so far, as did “Matilda” ($1,184,104), the new musical that didn’t take home the big award but did get a prime performance slot near the start of the Tony telecast. “Cinderella” ($1,059,352), another revival that got a seg on the Tonys, also saw a nice boost, while “Motown” ($1,441,448) upticked as well.

At the peak of the Top 10, “The Lion King” ($1,951,428) led the way with “Wicked” ($1,849,045) and “The Book of Mormon” ($1,721,966) falling in line behind it.

Meanwhile, play “Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike” ($654,304) climbed by more than $100,000 on the back of its win for the new play Tony. It was the biggest bump for any play last week, although “The Trip to Bountiful” ($492,591) and “The Nance” ($520,067) also upticked. Tom Hanks starrer “Lucky Guy” ($1,367,394), however, outpaced them all, while Bette Midler topliner “I’ll Eat You Last” ($854,203) continued to report stellar numbers for a show in one of Broadway’s smallest theaters.

A rising tide of warm-weather visitors to Gotham brought overall Rialto attendance up to 227,831, with box office cume climbing $1.4 million to $24.8 million for 26 shows on the boards.

There’s often an exodus of shows leaving the Rialto in the wake of the Tonys, but with so many of the season’s titles posting robust sales, that’s not case this year. Only one production, last season’s “Nice Work If You Can Get It” ($740,170), shuttered last week, and got a nice $150,000 rise out of it.

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