Easter week was flush for Broadway’s flashiest star vehicles and dismal for serious new plays, Pulitzer Prize notwithstanding.
Two Scott Rudin productions in previews tell the story: Hello, Dolly! with Bette Midler passed $2 million for the first time, its average ticket rose $8 to $201, according to sales figures released by the Broadway League. Meanwhile Lucas Hnath’s A Doll’s House Part 2 was little changed at $91,000, with an average ticket of $24.
Lynn Nottage’s Sweat couldn’t dramatically capitalize on its Pulitzer win on April 10. It was up just five percent to $320,000, half of its potential. Groundhog Day sold a respectable $607,000 over seven previews, given that many seats were comped ahead of tonight’s opening.
Enjoying their best weeks to-date were Waitress starring its composer, Sara Bareilles, Arthur Miller’s The Price with Mark Ruffalo and Danny DeVito, and Present Laughter with Kevin Kline. And Anastasia, based on the 1997 animated film, was standing room only, with an average ticket of $131. It opens on April 24.
The Play That Goes Wrong bucked the soft sales trend and did something right — made audiences laugh. Grosses for the British farce jumped 18 percent to $509,000.