Now that the first run of Darren taking the Broadway stage is complete, time to do a little bit of number crunching, analysis and explanations…
Darren Criss in How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying
January 3-22, 2012. 3 week run. 24 shows.
Total gross: just a hair over $4 million ($4,037,394 to be exact)
Week 1: $1,386,065
Week 2: $1,331,505
Week 3: $1,319,824
97.4% capacity average
Week 1: 99.8%
Week 2: 97.5%
Week 3: 94.8%
96.6% average gross potential
Week 1: 99.46%
Week 2: 95.54%
Week 3: 94.71%
$121.34 average ticket price before fees, etc.
Week 1: $121.87
Week 2: $119.90
Week 3: $122.26
BroadwayWorld reports top ticket price averaging steady as $302, however Hirshfeld box office was selling premium seating as high as $402. TeleCharge had premiums at one point upwards of $600.
Entire 3 week run was slated each week at #5 overall grossing against powerhouses Wicked, Lion King & Book of Mormon.
Right-o! Now to the apples versus apples portion:
Opening weeks Dan vs. Darren
Fun fact here too: Dan had 4 solid weeks of previews before opening so I’ll be using the ‘hard’ open date for this
Dan: $972,524 gross at 99.7% capacity and average ticket price $85.63.
Darren: $1,386,065 gross at 99.8% capacity and average ticket price $121.87.
Closing weeks Dan vs. Darren
Now this one will be a slight bit skewed as they threw an additional show, making Dan’s last push in closing a 9 show week, while Darren’s was the traditional 8.
Dan: $1,910,224 gross at 100.6% capacity and average ticket price $148.14
Darren: $1,319,824 gross at 94.8% capacity and average ticket price $122.26
(Sourcing: BroadwayWorld, EW)
I started to say a lot of similar things after week one but alluded that you couldn’t draw any type of analysis or conclusion until after things were completed, but now that is is, all this above kind of just confirms it in a way that even boggles *my* mind.
This time of the year for Broadway shows/tickets is normally very slow and very weak grossing, coming off the big holiday push. Unless you’re one of the perennials, this time of the year is not known to make noise with the almighty dollar, other than for shows to potentially flop & close. So to front these types of numbers is a kind of beyond a big deal.
This above, mind you, does not take into consideration any merchandise gross, which I would be quite curious to see numbers on. With a shortened, condensed run they had very little ‘Darren-specific’ merch, just a Darren dust jacketed DanRad program, poster and purple bow ties; the rest was very DanRad or show specific. Fun facts with merch: they sold OUT of bow ties early on closing weekend and seemed to have a dwindling inventory on posters.
Not only to mention the sheer VOLUME of press, awareness, buzz and chatter that surrounded Darren and his run/his time in New York. You honestly couldn’t turn anywhere without hearing, seeing or having people talk about something tied into it. Be it random people, serious theater goers, Darren fans or industry insiders. I lost track at home many times during the run that he himself or something tied into the show trended in the social media sphere.
The coverage the show and Darren received was all encompassing: from the traditionals of the New York Times, Playbill and BroadwayWorld, to all the pop culture driven outlets of EW, PopSugar and Access Hollywood and then the New York-based/New York-centric media from tv stations (WNBC), radio outlets (1010 WINS) and print (NY Post, NY Daily News). Also of note - he only did ONE national talk show press hit: Live with Kelly which aired during opening week. I can only guess as to what else could have brewed up with numbers, etc. if there was more of these types of press hits in the mix.
There’s some interesting more in depth types of numbers that are eye opening in regards to Dan’s run, but with Darren’s run only 3 weeks - it would be hard to make these types of comparisons (ala comparing apples to chocolate cake). The pacing though and the trending - Darren’s 3 weeks consistently outpaced and outtrended Dan.
The long and the short of it though: this basically proves without any types of doubts or reservations, that he could easily sustain a longer run on Broadway and bring in some serious bank to the producers and backers of the show from many avenues. Taking the money portion out of it? These industry people have at their fingertips a guaranteed, surefire way to bring themselves serious legitimate press, a metric ton of buzzing interest and a group of seriously dedicated and captivated fans.
Take note - this isn’t the last we’ve seen. Hardly, by any means, really. This is just the very beginning. Get ready. As Darren said on closing night: “We’ll see you next time on Broadway.”
Proud of this kid is a wee bit of an understatement.