Fans of Broadway gave theater producers reasons to smile this Christmas, with 18 of the current 37 shows breaking the $1 million mark for the week, led by "Hamilton,'' the new Andrew Lloyd Webber production "School of Rock - The Musical'' and Disney's "Aladdin'' and "The Lion King.''
The Broadway League said Monday that the shows on the Great White Way pulled in $36,271,797 for the very mild weather week ending Sunday, much better than the previous week's $29,484,797 but more than $4 million less - and with 19,000 fewer people attending overall - than the same week last year, when 36 shows attracted $40,993,950 and 318,721 ticket buyers.
"Aladdin'' grossed $2,095,363 for eight performances, a new house record at the New Amsterdam Theatre. That haul surpassed even its nine-performance record of $2,078,163 set this summer.
"The Lion King'' broke the eight-performance-week house record at the Minskoff Theatre with $2,587,925. (The touring version of the show, currently in Chicago, set the Cadillac Palace house record with a gross of $1,810,167.)
"School of Rock - The Musical'' pulled in $1,506,236 for the week, setting a new house record for an eight-show week at the Winter Garden Theatre, beating the old record there held by "Mamma Mia!'' set in 2009.
Numbers for the first week of January - traditionally one of the slowest times on Broadway - will look far worse when a flood of shows close, including "Hand to God,'' "Sylvia,'' "Dames at Sea'' and "A Gentleman's Guide to Love and Murder.''
Some other shows that enjoyed Christmas week include "Wicked'' with $2,400,920, "The Book of Mormon'' at $1,891,356, "The King and I'' with $1,094,022, and the new offerings "Hamilton'' at $1,844,837, "On Your Feet!'' with $1,239,109, "Something Rotten!'' at $1,005,546 and the revival of "Fiddler on the Roof'' at $1,339,255.