The top five Broadway shows are back for an encore, holding their top spots from last week, with Wicked once again proving most “popular.” Not only do these shows sell seats at some of the most historic theatres in town, they’re also smashing box office records. Here’s a look at the beautiful stages these shows are calling home, and how they’re earning their keep.
Here are the highlights from the venues for the top five Broadway shows (based on ticket sales) for the previous week:
1. Wicked – The Gershwin Theatre
Wicked originally premiered in 2003 at Broadway’s Gershwin Theatre, which was first opened in 1972. It is here that Wicked has made history, with the highest-selling week in Broadway on record. Selling more than $3 million in tickets over nine performances back in December of 2013, Wicked seems to have cast its spell. The Gershwin has also been home to other Broadway faves, such as The King and I (1977), Annie (1982) and Fiddler on the Roof (1990).
2. The Lion King – The Minskoff Theatre
Though The Lion King hit Broadway in October 1997 at the New Amsterdam Theatre, it moved in 2006 to Minskoff Theatre, where it still lives today. The show also gave this venue its own box office record in December of 2013, with more than $2 million in tickets sold in one week. Other notable shows that have had curtain calls on this stage include West Side Story (1980), Cabaret (1988) and Fiddler on the Roof (2004).
3. Aladdin – The New Amsterdam Theatre
Aladdin is relatively new to the stage, but it’s still had time to make all of the theatre’s wishes comes true: breaking the house record for ticket sales back in August of 2014. Located at 214 West 42nd Street, the New Amsterdam is one of the city’s oldest—114 years to be exact. Throughout its Broadway lifetime, the stage has been home to everything from Shakespeare to Disney.
4. The Phantom of the Opera – The Majestic Theatre
Broadway’s longest-running show in history, The Phantom of the Opera, opened in 1988 at the Majestic Theatre. With its 1,645 seats, it’s one of the largest theaters on Broadway and has also housed hits like South Pacific (1949), Camelot (1960) and The Music Man (1957). But the Phantom’s music of the night is the what has given this venue its record-breaking week: $1.8 million in ticket sales back in December of 2013.
5. Hello, Dolly! – The Shubert Theatre
When Hello, Dolly! debuted on Broadway, it was at the St. James Theatre in 1964. Since then, several revivals have brought the popular musical to other theatres—the Minskoff Theatre (1975) and Lunt-Fontanne Theatre (1978 and 1996). But its current run at the historic Shubert Theatre is where the show has been elevated to record-breaking status. Opening with Bette Midler in the starring role back in April, the show broke the record for Broadway first-day sales (at over $9 million). It went on to break the theatre’s own weekly record (with $1.9 million over seven performances) during its opening month. A New York City landmark, the Shubert Theatre has been around since 1913, and it has been home to some of Broadway’s most memorable shows, from A Chorus Line (1975) to Crazy for You (1992) to Chicago (1996).