Analysing the Impact of Broadway on the Economy of New York

Analysing the Impact of Broadway on the Economy of New York

At first, you might believe that Broadway does not have a considerable impact on the economy. This particular notion was present all around the US until the fall of 1975. Soon after the same, Broadway musical theatres were closed as a form of a strike by Local 802 of the American Federation of Musicians. As a result, the total attendance reduced, and theatre revenues went down by nearly 70%. Hence, it impacted the economy, and numerous individuals were affected. But does the same occur for the 21st century? Well, let’s find out.

1. Live Theatre


Once the impact was known, people began conducting experiments in order to determine the extent of the same. A major and successful research in this regard was conducted by Professor William Baumol of Mathematica, Inc, Princeton, New Jersey. Thanks to his findings, people now understand the effect of live theatre as it brings together a solid form of a contribution to the economy in general. With commercial theatre evolving, things have become all the more important in establishing a unique role.

2. Beyond New York

While most of the research was based on Broadway in New York, the results also indicated an overall impact. This is quite evident when you look back into commercial theatre’s annual gross revenue during the season between 1974-1975. While ticket sales alone accounted for around $57 million, experts knew that there was more to the picture because people also spent money on transportation, hotels and dining in order to complete the process.

3. The Big Number

Broadway shined during the season of 2012-13 as it generated nearly $12 billion in spending for the New York economy. Based on a report by Broadway League, this particular amount was capable of placing Broadway in the same list as Film and TV. Yes, you heard it right. Broadway was able to match with the silver screen in terms of revenue during this particular season. But that season also noted the lowest turnout since 2004-5 with around 11.57 million people. This shortcoming was adjusted thanks to the form of interest among tourists who made it a point to watch a Broadway play in 2012-13.

Big theatre

4. The Major Role

With these figures, one can rightfully state that the entertainment industry is a significant player in the economy. While the latest figures don’t add up to these vast numbers, they will manage to come up once the impact of a pandemic clears out of our space. For the time being, all we can do is to hope and wait for the lights to shine again as characters take centre stage to talk about a story that you have never heard before.