Broadway Grosses Analysis: Jinkx Monsoon Sends Pride Week Chicago Grosses Skyrocketing | Playbill

Grosses Broadway Grosses Analysis: Jinkx Monsoon Sends Pride Week Chicago Grosses Skyrocketing

Plus, the Tony-winning revival of Merrily We Roll Along is the top grosser on Broadway for the first time in its run.

Graphic by Vi Dang

As predicted in the previous column, Broadway's overall box office took a spill last week, dropping a little over 7% (compared to the week prior) to $34,783,390 over the 30 currently running shows. But that's not actually bad news in this case. Two shows closed the week prior, and though we added a new title to the boards—Cole Escola's Off-Broadway smash Oh, Mary!—its first week only included five previews. On top of this, Home and Mary Jane played seven-performance weeks.

More importantly, a lot of shows had excellent weeks. Most notably, two-time RuPaul's Drag Race winner Jinkx Monsoon proved why she was asked back to Chicago last week. She began her encore run as Matron "Mama" Morton June 27, wisely just in time for NYC Pride, and that sent the show's grosses soaring with an increase of more than a quarter million dollars compared to the week previous. When you're good to Jinkx, Jinkx is good for ticket sales.

And then there's the Tony-winning Merrily We Roll Along. A mainstay among Broadway's highest grossers for nearly its entire run, the revival reached new heights in its penultimate week (July 7 is the final performance). Its take of $2.32 million not only broke house records and is the highest of the revival's run, it was the highest seen on Broadway last week. Yes, the one-time Broadway failure (the original 1981 production famously ran for just 16 performances) has now in its first Broadway revival out-grossed even usual chart topper The Lion King, which was demoted to the number two spot last week.

What makes this even more astounding is the capacity of those productions' respective theatres. The Minskoff, which houses The Lion King, seats 1,696. Last week, 13,162 people saw The Lion King, and they paid a pretty penny for it, too—the average ticket price was $171.98 (the average across all of Broadway's 30 currently running shows was $131.47). Over at Merrily's Hudson on the other hand, seating allows for 966 per performance, and 7,728 people saw the show last week. But the average—average—ticket price at Merrily was an astonishing $300.44, almost double Lion King's. That's how you come in as Broadway's top grosser even with half the seats of your competitor.

The rest of the top five was filled out by what is becoming the new normal: The Lion KingWickedHamilton, and Cabaret. Though not reaching the upper echelons of Broadway's big earners, Best Musical winner The Outsider continued to see a steady increase in ticket sales after this year's Tony Awards. It brought in $1.34 million last week, placing it among the top 10 top grossers, and is the highest the musical has seen so far in its run (the same was true the week previous). 

Take a look at the full report here.

The $1 Million Club (shows that earned $1 million or more at the box office):

(16 of 30 currently running productions)

The 90s Club (shows that played to 90% or higher of their seats filled over the entire week):

(20 of 30 currently running productions)

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