Calling all Broadway fans! If you ever find yourself singing “oh what a beautiful morning” and washing “that man out of” your hair as part of your daily morning ritual, then sit down with your coffee and enlighten yourself with these interesting and riveting facts about Broadway.
Broadway in Numbers
Did you know that:
20 new plays and 10 new musicals came on the Broadway scene between 2017 and 2018. That’s a lot to choose from!
The average show time of a musical is 2 hours and 14 minutes, and for a play, it’s 2 hours and 36 minutes. But the longest show this season, Angels in America, holds the record at a whopping 7 hours and 30 minutes with both acts combined.
68% of Broadway audiences from 2013 to 2014 were women, but about 80% of play cast and crew members were made up of men. Gender diversity, much?
If you’re on a tighter budget but still want a Broadway treat, try SpongebobSquarepants– it only costs $0.46 per minute! Or, you can go see Saint Joan for even cheaper at $0.35 per minute instead.
There were over 186 Directors, Designers, Choreographers, and Writers involved in creating all recent Broadway shows. Now that’s called serious teamwork!
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Several powerful women are appearing on the Broadway scene this year – some acting veterans, others recently making their names known. All of them are definitely worth checking out while they’re on stage now. They include:
Glenda Jackson & Lauri Metcalf – These dynamic leading women in the play Three Tall Women are amazing in their own right. Along with actress Allison Pill, Jackson and Metcalf play the same main character at different ages in her life, and all of them bring an electric coherency to the table. Glenda Jackson won a Tony Award for Best Leading Actress in a Play, and Lauri Metcalf also won for Best Featured Actress in a Play.
Katrina Lenk – If you haven’t seen The Band’s Visit yet, then you’re definitely missing out! Katrina Lenk’s performance of an Israeli cafe owner’s encounter with an Egyptian band leader is absolutely fascinating and memorable. It landed her with winning a Tony Award in this already Tony Award-winning musical.
Susan Brown – This featured star in the two-part epic Angels in America has enormous shoes to fill, and with her responsibility to make not one, not two, but five different characters in the same play come to life, it’s no wonder she was nominated for a Tony Award. Be sure to make time for this amazing saga before it closes its doors in the Broadway scene!
Robert de Niro launched A Bronx Tale into a critical success starting with the 1993 movie of the same name. That flick dominated the box office, is regarded as one of de Niro’s best films, and has scored an amazing 97% on review site Rotten Tomatoes. In 2016, A Bronx Tale got new life when it hit Broadway.
This production remains true to its roots while still keeping an authentic feel, as it was co-directed by de Niro himself. Audiences have raved about it, keeping the show going strong for over 700 performances. What really sets the musical a cut above the competition is the songs with lyrics by Tony Award nominee Glenn Slater.
However, if you want to take in this story about a man conflicted in his loyalty to gangsters and family, time is running out on Broadway. The curtain is set to close on August 5th as A Bronx Tale prepares to go on tour this fall. If you want to catch Broadway stars like ChazzPalminteri and Nick Cordero lending their pipes to the catchy, doo-wop infused songs, you’ll need to grab tickets quick. Otherwise you’ll have to take a road trip see the spectacle. The national tour commences in Rochester, NY on October 14.
A Bronx Tale has been a delight on Broadway for several years now and you may face competition for the best seats in its remaining shows. Drop by Tickets Broadway to make a reservation for the whole family now.
Veteran Broadway star Glenda Jackson has hit her 80’s running with no sign of slowing down yet! She just won a Tony Award for her stellar work in Three Tall Women by Edward Albee. Missed the performance? You’ll have another chance to see this talented veteran at her best in King Lear.
The play may be about King Lear, but the real royalty here is Ms. Jackson. She plays the title character and has a lot of experience with the job of holding a crown – in this case, a Triple Crown of Acting. That’s right, Glenda is one of the few, the proud, the multi-talented who has won an Academy Award, Emmy Award, and Tony Award in their lifetime. The play hits the stage in April 2019, so pull out your calendars and plan ahead.
If you can’t get enough Glenda Jackson in your life, check out her body of work. When she wasn’t serving in Parliament for a whopping 23 years, she had a very active acting career. You can take in her undeniable talent in films like 1969’s Women In Love and the Academy Award winning A Touch of Class (1974).
With talent like this, King Lear will be a show to remember. It’s expected for tickets to sell out fast for April 2019 performances. You won’t want to miss out on this star-studded production of one of Shakespeare’s best plays, so drop by Tickets Broadway today to stay on top of the latest news.
Hamilton both reinvents and reinvigorates American history
Lin-Manuel Miranda, the writer, composer, and formally leading role ofHamilton: An American Musical, took a big risk when he conceived of an American historical musical with a hip-hop infused performance. Broadway audiences are notoriously fickle, and they could easily have turned their noses up at this unique production. Instead, they embraced it in huge numbers. Hamilton debuted to sold out performances and absolutely stomped the competition. This smash hit went on to break 2016’s box office records and has been drawing in audiences from coast to coast ever since.
Lin-Manuel Miranda during his last performance as Alexander Hamilton.
Critics raved about every aspect of the show: the rap, hip-hop and R&B infused music, the elaborate costumes, and the snappy dialogue that blended modern slang with phrases from the period and famous quotes we remember from our history classes. The production even has some famous fans; in 2016, President Barack Obama stated that this musical is the only thing on which he and Dick Cheney could agree.
The show melds together the revolutionary spirit of the founding fathers and the modern street-talk and ambition of American youth—in particular, youth of color. In an age when our younger generations are more outspoken and politically aware than ever before, Hamilton plays on the spark of progressive youth and ignites it. The show’s unique dialect perfectly represents the varied motivations and feelings of the diverse group of immigrants of the American colonies when they were just figuring out how to come together, and by doing so, also prompts us to ask if we are respecting and listening to the diverse voices of today.
Hamilton’s music and themes resonates organically with many people, but the producers also go a step further to engage its audiences: they introduced a lottery. The show honors Alexander Hamilton being on the $10 bill by giving out 2 tickets for $10 to lotto winners. This was such a big hit that it caused traffic jams as people waited in line for hours for their chance to win. Since then, the lottery has changed to an online format, saving the theater from mobs of eager participants.
The lottery is fun to participate in, but it’s also incredibly competitive. If you aren’t lucky today, you can always pick up tickets for Hamilton or explore other Broadway hits at Tickets Broadway.
Did you know that Broadway shows have been produced in some form since the mid 1700s? These productions have a rich history of performance and etiquette. Want to make the right impression? Here’s what NOT to do:
Leave Your Phone On
Don’t just mute it, having the phone on vibrate can still cause a distraction. Don’t play with it during the show either. You may think you’re sending a discreet text, but everyone in the rows behind you will be distracted by your bright screen (and probably be tempted to read over your shoulder!).
Forget to Research the Shows Beforehand
Broadway has something for everyone, from cute family-friendly shows to raunchy, scary, and otherwise adult productions. Make sure you know what you’re signing up for before buying tickets! Even kid-friendly productions may have age restrictions that ask you to only bring children ages 6 and up.
Don’t be that guy who comes in 20 minutes late, crawling over people’s laps to reach your seat. It’s recommended to try to arrive 15 minutes before the curtain rises. If you’re even earlier, you can always hang out in the concession area.
The audience has probably come to hear the performers sing, not you. One exception: in some productions, you’ll actually be invited to sing along. In that case, show everyone what you can do! Note that when it comes to clapping, however, you are welcome to clap in the middle of a set, unlike at a ballet or opera performance.
Now that you know what not to do, are you ready to show off your impeccable manners at the show? Visit Tickets Broadway to score tickets to hit productions.
Broadway is a major money maker and always has been. Many different Broadway musicals are household names—but that doesn’t necessarily mean they are the ones that have made the most money. Below are the highest grossing Broadway musicals in history—or at least up until this point.
5. CHICAGO (the revival)
As one of the longest running shows on Broadway, it’s no surprise Chicago is one of the top earners ever. Since it’s revival in 1996 alone, this Broadway classic has grossed over $586 million.
4. MAMMA MIA!
This tale of a woman who is about to get married searching for her biological father used the music of ABBA to pack houses until September of 2015. The show grossed over $624 million and has had a hit Hollywood movie adapted from it, with a sequel on the way.
3. THE PHANTOM OF THE OPERA
This is one of those musicals which is a household name and also is one of the top grossing in Broadway history. The year 2018 will be The Phantom of the Opera’s 30th anniversary and it’s still the longest running show on Broadway, with total grosses well over 1 billion dollars.
This adaptation of The Wizard of Oz from the Wicked Witch of the West’s perspective has been one of the most seen musicals this century, after opening in 2003. Since that date it has grossed nearly $1.2 billion dollars.
1. THE LION KING
The highest grossing Broadway show in history is, surprisingly, The Lion King, recently surpassing the Phantom of the Opera (though Wicked is still close behind it). It is the third longest running show on Broadway, which may be due in part to the Disney film recognition paving the way. It has grossed over $1.4 billion dollars to date.
Tootsie to star Santino Fontana, Lilli Cooper, Sarah Stiles, John Behlmann
Want to see a Broadway show before it actually hits Broadway? Come and see Tootsie, a brand new musical based on the acclaimed movie by Sydney Pollack. Boadway in Chicago and Scott Sanders Productions announced last Monday the complete casting for Tootsie‘s recent world premiere onstage:
Tony Award nominee Santino Fontana will play the lead role, Michael Dorsey. He is best known for voice-acting Prince Hans in the movie Frozen in 2013 (recently adapted into a Broadway musical) and playing the character Greg in the CW’s Crazy Ex-Girlfriend. Joining him will be Australian Wicked Tour veteran Lilli Cooper, who had played Elphaba before and is playing as Julie Nichols for this venture. Tony-nominated Sarah Stiles will join as Sandy Lester and has performed in many productions such as Avenue Q, Vanities, and Hand to God. Other acting roles include Max Von Horn by John Behlmann, Jeff Slater by Andy Grotelueschen, Rita Mallory by Julie Haltson, Ron Carlisle by Reg Rogers, and Stan Fields by Michael McGrath.
Tootsie showcases the story of Michael Dorsey, an aspiring actor with dreams of making it big. He struggles to make that dream a reality until a surprise turn in his career propels him forward into stardom. The show is currently on a “pre-Broadway” track and will play in Chicago first in the fall before it carves its path into the Great White Way and officially becomes a Broadway hit in Spring 2019. Those interested can order their tickets here for great deals on quality live Broadway and Broadway-bound entertainment.
Who knew that the one-and-only Cher would go out of her way to see – and critique – her own Broadway show? The famous celebrity visited the three “Chers” in person backstage Monday night and gave them a pep talk before watching her life story The Cher Show literally play out in front of her.
What was it like to witness her own life on the Broadway stage? “It needs work. I’m not supposed to say that but I don’t care,” she said. “But you know, I was really very surprised by how close to real these people feel.”
She goes on to say, “In many parts, it was much, much better than I thought it would be. And there were no parts where I wanted to gouge my eyes out.” She enjoyed the high-quality talent and accuracy from the actors. The script, however, could use improvement. Cher wrote down a number of annotations to give to the director Jason Moore afterward.
“There are lines in the show that sound like quotes but aren’t quite right. I’ve been telling him the real quotes,” Cher remarked. “I have a lot to say. And I am pushing them to do three dance songs in a concert-style way at the end, a bit like they do in Mamma Mia. I think the audience would like that.” As it turns out, Cher appears in Mamma Mia: Here We Go Again this July.
Want to throw in your own two cents? Book tickets to The Cher Show now and see what you think! You just might agree with the famous icon herself and make your own theater review!
Every year, new shows open on Broadway, some to rave reviews and sold out crowds, some to relatively empty houses and quick closings. So with the cost of tickets these days, it’s important to know which show to go to, ensuring you see the next big thing. Below is a list of the hottest new Broadway shows in 2018.
Based on the Hans Christian Andersen story that was turned into a Disney film that has been one of the biggest Disney films in history, Frozen is undoubtedly one of the most anticipated musicals on Broadway this year… and probably will be for many years to come. Will this be the next Lion King?
The popular teen film directed by the beloved Tina Fey, Mean Girls is spectacular! Fey wrote the book and the music was composed by Jeff Richmond, Fey’s husband. Together this duo has created a hilarious musical that is perfect for the whole family!
Anything with Harry Potter on it seems to translate to success and this two part Broadway Harry Potter tale isn’t any different. Critics are raving about this magical show with excellent writing and illusions that will have you jumping out of your seat!
Award winning playwright Young Jean Lee wrote this successful off-Broadway play and now it is being produced on Broadway. She will be the first Asian American woman playwright to have her work produced on the big stage. This comedy is a hilarious take on American father son drama. Straight White Men just hit Broadway this summer so grab your tickets while you can!