I’ve heard so much about the revival of Stephen Sondheim and Hugh Wheeler’s Sweeney Todd that I’ve begun to think that perhaps I ought to take to trip to NYC to see it. After all, it is one of my favorites of Sondheim’s oeuvre, and it’s been years since I’ve seen a live production, and the revival does use a full orchestra and has been getting killer reviews, so…
So I took a look at at the prices they’re charging for matinee performances.
But wait a minute. Perhaps I should put the prices into perspective. What did I pay for orchestra seats back in 1979 for the original production which also had a full orchestra?
OK, $18. Center of the orchestra for a Wednesday matinee. Those wee good seats in the Uris Theatre as it was then called. According to the Inflation calculator, that $18 would be the rough equivalent of $74.59 today.
And what would I have to pay for tickets for the rear mezzanine for a matinee performance?
$200 and up.
A Saturday evening orchestra seat could go for close to $600.
I don’t know much about the economics of putting on a Broadway show, but I know it’s expensive and most shows don’t recoup their expenses.
From what I can see, currently the revival is selling out most performances. I hope it continues, but it will have to do so without me.