With the closing last week of another production, the play “Mary Stuart,” the total box office of the remaining 20 dropped to $17,853,836, anemic...

With the closing last week of another production, the play “Mary Stuart,” the total box office of the remaining 20 dropped to $17,853,836, anemic compared to the previous week’s box office of $19,325,545. Ticket sales for the season so far total $258,130,894, down 3.2 percent compared to $266,617,631 at the same time last season. Broadway can expect to see a historically low box office post Labor Day, just around the corner.

Ranking the million-dollar productions, eight led the pack: Wicked at the Gershwin, The Lion King at the Minskoff, Billy Elliot at the Imperial, The Little Mermaid at the Lunt-Fontanne, West Side Story at the Palace, Jersey Boys at the August Wilson, Hair at the Al Hirschfeld and Mamma Mia! at the Winter Garden. At the top of the heap was “Wicked” at $1,634,843.

Looking at attendance figures, the Great White Way achieved just over 90 percent overall for the week. Six shows reported attendance at 95 percent or better. The production achieving the greatest increase compared to the previous week at 4.6 percent was Avenue Q at the Golden. No doubt theatergoers were doing their best to catch the show before it closes on September 13. Surprisingly, Burn the Floor at the Longacre lost a lot of its glow with a 22 percent drop in attendance and the largest drop in revenue, from $665,009 last week to just $426,308 this week. It may be that this drop comes about with a change in the lineup; it appears that “Dancing With the Stars” performers Karina Smirnoff and Maksim Chmerkovskiy who headlined until August 16 were responsible for much of the ticket sales.

In other news, the Tony Award-winning musical Chicago at the Ambassador has extended its run to at least July 4, 2010. “Jersey Boys” has extended its run to May 2, 2010.

Congratulations are due to the president of Jujamcyn Theaters, Rocco Landesman. He was confirmed as the new chairman of the NEA, the National Endowment for the Arts on August 7.

An interesting note: the Spanish lyrics in the current production of “West Side Story” have been dropped and replaced with English.

Please note: Beginning with the week ending May 31, 2009, “Gross” represents Gross Gross and “Attendance” represents Total Attendance. For every week prior to May 31, these numbers represent Net Gross and Paid Attendance respectively. The Broadway League took this into account when comparing this season’s figures to the previous season’s and made adjustments accordingly.

Broadway Gross Ticket Sales Week ending August 23, 2009
All data provided by The Broadway League

Broadway Gross Ticket Sales
Week Ending August 23, 2009

Weekly GrossTotal Atten.Prev.Perf.Total CapacityAvg. Ticket PriceAtten. %
9 to 5
Avenue Q
Billy Elliot
Burn the Floor
In the Heights
Jersey Boys
(August Wilson)
Mamma Mia!
(Winter Garden)
Mary Poppins
(New Amsterdam)
Next to Normal
Rock of Ages
South Pacific
The 39 Steps
The Lion King
The Little Mermaid
The Phantom of the Opera
West Side Story