After a run of only 21 weeks and 169 performances, on August 13, 2012, the Tony-winning Broadway musical “Once” recouped its $5.5 million investment. “Once” grossed $1,060,427 for the week ending August 12. The musical opened March 18, 2012 at the Bernard B. Jacobs Theatre, and producers announced that the show has become profitable “faster than any new Broadway musical in more than a decade,” according to the New York Times.
The musical “Once” started off-Broadway at the New York Theatre Workshop in 2011, it quickly became a hit and transferred to Broadway later in 2011. The Bernard B. Jacobs Broadway theatre with just over 1,000 seats was a successful adjustment for the production.
“Once” is based on the 2006 Academy Award-winning romantic film of the same name. The story takes place in Dublin and is about a romance between a Czech flower seller and an Irish street musician who are drawn to each other by their shared love of music. Over one week, a friendship blossoms and quickly turns into a strong, but complicated love story.
The original film made $20 million and it only cost about $150,000 to make it.
The cast of the off-Broadway and Broadway show is also the orchestra. The musical stars are Steve Kazee and Cristin Milioti, who play Guy and Girl. John Tiffany is the director and choreography is by Steven Hoggett, in both the Broadway and Off-Broadway productions.
Steve Kazee was not a big time actor when first cast for “Once,” but he has since won a Tony for Best Actor for his role in the production. He earned a MFA in acting at NYU in 2005. Kazee was cast as a replacement in the Broadway production of “Spamalot.” Some of his other Broadway roles include: “110 in the Shade” and “To Be Or Not To Be.”
Cristin Milioti earned a Tony nomination for Best Actress for “Once.” She debuted as a replacement in the Broadway production of “The Lieutenant of Inishmore” in 2006. Some of her other stage credits include Broadway “Coram Boy” and Off-Broadway “The Devil’s Disciple,” “Some Americans Abroad,” “Crooked,” and “The Retributionists.” She will also have a star role next to Leonardo DiCaprio in the film, The Wolf of Wall Street.
The musical “Once” features the same songs as the film by Marketa Irglova and Glen Hansard. Both of the songwriters also co-starred in the film and the Broadway production. The song “Falling Slowly” won a 2007 Academy Award for Best Original Song.
The Broadway production of “Once” has earned eleven Tony Award nominations and won eight of them, which includes Best Musical. In 2011 to 2012, the production also won the Drama League Award and the Distinguished Production of a Musical Award. After winning the eight Tonys, the production received positive reviews from critics. It also gained television exposure on America’s Got Talent.
Usually only about 3 in 10 Broadway shows ever recoup investments and make a profit, according to The Washington Times. However, Broadway producer Ken Davenport of “Godspell” and “Chinglish” mentioned on his blog “The Producer’s Perspective” that about 75 percent of the last 30 Best Play and 30 Best Musical Tony winners productions recouped, according to Backstage.com.
A national tour of “Once” is set for the summer of 2013. For more information on the musical “Once” visit: Oncemusical.com.