The Popularity of Broadway Shows & Musicals

The Broadway              League Broadway             World Theatrical Index

Data Source​

The origins of Broadway date to the mid-1700s with the formation of a theater company performing operas and Shakespearian plays for audiences. Now Broadway refers to 41 theaters and their performances in New York City and has been widely considered to represent the highest level of commercial theatre in the English-speaking world. The history of Broadway theater is a long one that has seen much change and growth in the industry. 

Shows & Musicals in Broadway

Besides Phantom, Lion King, Wicked, Hamilton, and Book of Mormon, these long-running hits. Broadway also keeps making new productions like Frozen, Harry Potter and even Sponge Bob.

Popularity over the time

From the chart, we can see there the Seats sold, Gross, and Performances have very similar trends. Different shows have different seating capacities, which means some shows have the potential to make more money per performance than others.


Also, there is a huge rise after 2000, especially in 2018. Besides Phantom, Lion King, Wicked, Hamilton, and Book of Mormon, these long-running hits. In 2018, broadway had its usual complement of shows adapted from movies – Frozen, Mean Girls, Pretty Woman, King Kong, Network. But it was a year that saw such a proliferation in the reproduction and distribution on screens, both online and in movie theaters, of “live theater,” that it is why there​ is a drastic growth in 2018.

Does Popularity have Seasonal Disparities?

January and February are quiet months After the holiday season on Broadway as a result of the dreaded "winter doldrums".

New Broadway shows are opening in April and Broadway tourism starts picking up.  Broadway gross continues to climb, getting big spikes from Spring Breakers, tourists visiting for Easter weekend, and even New Yorkers looking for a nice holiday activity. 

In September, gross starts to dip towards as tourists go home and families prepare for the new school year. 

The Most Popular Shows & Musicals of the year

 Top Broadway show changes every year.  For decades, people of all ages have been lining up to see the latest Broadway productions.   However, hits like "Hamilton" and "Wicked" are still on Broadway, even years after debuting.

TOP 50 Shows & Musicals

The Lion King
Saturday Nrights Forever
Legally Blonde

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