After a record-breaking year of box office sales, the Great White Way had to cut numerous shows this summer – 16 to be exact – and now, Broadway investors are feeling the blow.
Right after the Tony Awards, it was announced that King Kong, The Cher Show, and Hillary and Clinton would end early, and last week, Pretty Woman and Frankie and Johnny in the Clair de Lune followed. According to documents filed with the SEC, investors are set to lose up to $111 million, Forbes reports, noting that King Kong capitalized at $36.5 million, The Cher Show at 19 million, Pretty Woman at $17 million, The Prom at $13.5 million, and Be More Chill at a low $9 million.
Before Labor Day, 16 shows will close, including plays Gary and King Lear, limited-runs of The Ferryman, Burn This, and What The Constitution Means To Me, and non-profits My Fair Lady, Ink, All My Sons, and Kiss Me, Kate. This year proved to be more difficult than usual for newer plays and musicals, as stakes were high with only 22 theaters to choose from. While The Cher Show picked up a couple of Tony Awards and The Prom earned Musical of the Year, these shows still had to compete with Broadway veterans Wicked and The Lion King, as well as Hamilton, Frozen, and Hello Dolly.
Thus, new shows will emerge. Later this year, fans can expect to see Alanis Morisette’s Jagged Little Pill, Girl From The North Country, Darren Brown: Secret, and the recently-announced Slave Play, among others.
While the industry seems like a revolving door – pushing shows out one day and introducing new ones the next – it all boils down to money and which show can exceed expectations.