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Theater Musical

Broadway's Hamilton Musical a Big Box Office Winner

September 30, 2015 by Amy

Hamilton Record-Setting Broadway Run

The “hottest Broadway show” tag has been Hamilton’s all year, as the smash hit’s popularity was seemingly unstoppable even before it finally came to the Great White Way. The Lin-Manuel Miranda-penned gem officially opened at the Richard Rodgers Theatre just shy of two months ago but has already been confirmed for at least 100 more shows through Sept. 2016.

Based on the whirlwind of box office success for Hamilton, unending praise from critics, a cast album that could potentially become mainstream, and revolving door of celebrities in attendance night after night, it got us thinking about how its remarkable early run stacks up against other prominent Broadway hits.

Study Reveals Hamilton to Be a True Box Office Winner

Taking a look at box office data from Broadway World for major musicals and plays dating as far back as Cats’ debut in Oct. 1982, Hamilton indeed boasts the best six-week opening run of the bunch, accruing $8,978,868 in revenue. The haul is a significant improvement on Manuel’s 2008 debut, In the Heights, which played at the same Richard Rodgers Theatre, but tallied just $3,111,520 during its first six weeks on Broadway.

Of course, venue size can be a major factor in revenue totals, but interestingly enough, Hamilton’s seat count through six weeks was only 64,171, which drops it down to 15th. Meanwhile, Aladdin’s 82,717 seats sold was good for the top spot in the category.

Broadway's Enduring Hits

The full top 25 by six-week box office revenue is featured in the table below, though theater fans may notice that a number of heavy hitters are suspiciously absent.

Among the notable Broadway productions not making the cut were Wicked ($5,635,966), The Book of Mormon ($5,590,677), The Lion King ($4,600,583), Jersey Boys ($4,190,056), and Phantom of the Opera ($2,931,387), though despite modest early earnings, the productions have had little problem standing the test of time.


Top 25 Broadway Shows (By Box Office Revenue)
Rank Show Six-Week Total Total Seats Sold Venue
1 Hamilton (2015) $8,978,868 64,171 Richard Rodgers Theatre
2 Evita (2012 revival) $8,843,746 73,483 Marquis Theatre
3 Lucky Guy (2013) $8,194,921 57,267 Broadhurst Theatre
4 It's Only a Play (2014) $8,009,465 51,514 Gerald Schoenfeld Theatre
5 Elf (2010) $7,784,467 63,219 Al Hirschfeld Theatre
6 The Addams Family (2010) $7,778,331 70,856 Lunt-Fontanne Theatre
7 Betrayal (2013 revival) $7,564,693 50,544 Ethel Barrymore Theatre
8 An American in Paris (2015) $7,533,662 78,476 Palace Theatre
9 Motown the Musical (2013) $7,390,860 72,866 Lunt-Fontanne Theatre
10 Les Miserables (2014 revival) $7,261,048 63,744 Imperial Theatre
11 West Side Story (2009 revival) $7,219,645 81,448 Palace Theatre
12 Cinderella (2013) $6,997,951 73,825 Broadway Theatre
13 Fish in the Dark (2015) $6,989,848 52,303 Cort Theatre
14 A Raisin in the Sun (2014 revival) $6,883,760 50,208 Ethel Barrymore Theatre
15 The Audience (2015) $6,875,537 45,392 Schoenfeld Theatre
16 Aladdin (2014) $6,809,749 82,717 New Amsterdam Theatre
17 Billy Elliot (2008) $6,758,700 62,961 Imperial Theatre
18 Mary Poppins (2006) $6,715,839 80,311 New Amsterdam Theatre
19 Finding Neverland (2015) $6,456,601 67,513 Lunt-Fontanne Theatre
20 Kinky Boots (2013) $6,362,800 67,045 Al Hirschfeld Theatre
21 Matilda the Musical (2013) $6,274,492 67,090 Shubert Theatre
22 Follies (2011 revival) $6,030,597 65,649 Marquis Theatre
23 The Producers (2001) $5,909,334 78,713 St. James Theatre
24 The King and I (2015 revival) $5,766,604 50,256 Vivian Beaumont Theater
25 The Color Purple (2005) $5,741,235 74,980 Bernard B. Jacobs Theatre

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