Broadway Had Highest Grosses Ever for 2011-2012 Season, But Ticket Prices Continue to Rise

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There is a lot of pretty good news for Broadway in the Broadway League’s annual “Demographics of Broadway” report for the 2011-2012 season.

While attendance was slightly down versus the 2010-2011 season (12.33 million vs. 12.54 million), grosses were the highest ever in Broadway history, rising to $1.139 billion from last season’s previous record of $1.08 billion.  Of course, this also means that unfortunately average ticket prices continued to rise, with this season’s average ticket price rising to $92.37 from last season’s previous record of $86.21. 

In addition, Broadway remains to grow as a tourist destination, with tourists making up 63.4% of the record 12.3 million people who attended Broadway shows this season (up from last season’s 61.7%).  Of that, 18.4% were from visitors from other countries.

Audiences also were more diverse.  While the percentage of white patrons declined 82.5% in 2010-2011 to 77.8%, there were slight raises in Asian theatergoers (6.5% from 4%) and Hispanic audiences (6% from 5.7%).  However, the largest increase was in black audiences, which rose to 5.4% from 1.5%.  It’s worth noting that plays like The Mountaintop, which starred Samuel L. Jackson and Angela Bassett, drew large African-American audiences this season.  Audiences remain predominantly female, making up 67% of this season’s audience.  Average age of ticket-buyers inched down to 43.5 years old from 2010-2011’s 44.

Of course, there remain a core group of rabid fans.  While just 5% of the audience saw fifteen or more shows that year, that accounts for 29% (3.6 million) of all admissions.  In addition, a majority of theatergoers see two or more shows a year.

You could check out the rest of the statistics at the Broadway League and additional statistics from Deadline.

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About Author

In college, overachiever Christopher McKittrick double-majored in Film and English because he loves to read, write, and watch movies. Since then Chris – who was born and raised on Long Island, New York and currently lives in Queens – has become a published author of fiction and non-fiction, a contributor to entertainment websites, and has spoken about literature, film, and comic books at various conferences across the country when he’s not getting into trouble in New York City (apparently it’s illegal to sleep on street corners...) For more information about Chris, visit his website here!

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