The season ended May 24 as Broadway’s best in history with cumulative grosses up more than .6 percent, to about $943,300,000, close to six...

The season ended May 24 as Broadway’s best in history with cumulative grosses up more than .6 percent, to about $943,300,000, close to six million dollars ahead of the previous season of about $937,500,000. The reported figures are approximate, taking into account the unofficially reported “Young Frankenstein” numbers, about $23,500,000. It played for 32 weeks of the 52-week season.

The release of the end-of-the-season statistics for the 2008-2009 season pointed out that 43 shows had opened, the highest number of shows since the 1982-1983 season when 50 productions opened. That’s ten new musicals, eight new plays, four musical revivals, 16 play revivals and five special performances. The Broadway League has collected data since 1957.

This past week’s box office of $20,413,144 exceeded last week’s total of $19,514,194. It fell a little below the same week last season’s numbers of $20,770,363. Million-dollar productions were once again Wicked at the Gershwin, West Side Story at the Palace, Billy Elliot at the Imperial, The Lion King at the Minskoff and Jersey Boys at the August Wilson. Eleven shows posted 95 percent or better attendance, including four at more than 100 percent of capacity.

Leading box office returns for plays was God of Carnage at the Jacobs followed by Blithe Spirit at the Shubert and Exit the King at the Barrymore. Of these, “God of Carnage” was one of the four posting more than 100 percent capacity audiences.

Shrek, playing at the Broadway Theatre, saw the largest dollar increase over the previous reporting period, about $134,000. “33 Variations”, which closed May 21, posted the largest drop in box office over the previous reporting period, $97,000.

“Desire Under the Elms” at the St. James closed May 24, playing well below capacity, but reporting the largest increase in audience, 16 percent, for the week compared to others. Accent on Youth at the Friedman saw the largest drop in attendance for the week at 16 percent.

Broadway Gross Ticket Sales Week ending May 24, 2009
All data provided by The Broadway League

Broadway Gross Ticket Sales
Week Ending May 24, 2009

Weekly GrossTotal Atten.Prev.Perf.Total CapacityAvg. Ticket PriceAtten. %
33 Variations
9 to 5
Accent on Youth
August: Osage County
(Music Box)
Avenue Q
Billy Elliot
Blithe Spirit
(St. James)
Exit the King
God of Carnage
Guys and Dolls
In the Heights
Irena’s’ Vow
(Walter Kerr)
Jersey Boys
(August Wilson)
Joe Turner’s…Gone
Mamma Mia!
(Winter Garden)
Mary Poppins
(New Amsterdam)
Mary Stuart
Next to Normal
Reasons to be Pretty
Rock of Ages
South Pacific
The 39 Steps
The Lion King
The Little Mermaid
The Norman Conquests
(Circle in Square)
The Phantom of the Opera
The Philanthropist
(American Airlines)
Waiting for Godot
(Studio 54)
West Side Story

Last Updated on May 29, 2009 by By Carol-Ann Rudy