Pat Flicker Addiss and Cristyne Nicholas spoke about Broadway and tourism on Wednesday, June 26, at the Foreign Press Center at the United Nations Building in New York.
A Producer of Broadway shows including Little Women, Spring Awakening,Promises/ Promises, and this year’s Tony Award winner Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike, Addiss said, “If you haven’t been to Broadway, I suggest you go.”
Nicholas, who owns a company a Strategic Initiative Specializing in Tourism, Hospitality, and Transportation said that Broadway is 102 years old this year. The Broadway theaters support the quality of life in the Broadway area, particularly between 42nd Street and 47th Street. In encouraging visitation to New York City, tourism helps businesses along the Broadway border. Nicholas spoke about ticket options including TKTS and Rush Tickets directly at the box office.
Addiss said, “The culture of New York is Broadway.”
Approximately 11.5 million people visited Times Square last year. The 39 Broadway theaters in New York make Broadway the most visited area in New York City. Broadway sold 11.5 million tickets last year. Nicholas said, “Times Square is the number #1 most visited neighborhood in New York City, and it gives you perspective of how Broadway works with the 34 billion dollar industry that is tourism.”
In terms of looking at the wave of the future, Addiss mentioned less conventional staging methods that are seen off-Broadway. Addiss said, “If you stay static, you lose.”
Off-Broadway can also do more cutting edge things for less money. Addiss is producer of the Off-Broadway show “Buyer and Cellar” featuring Michael Urie. It is a comedy that takes place in Barbara Streisand’s basement. “What takes place in the basement is fictitious,” Addiss said.
Tourists from United Kingdom, Canada, Brazil, France, Germany, and Australia generate revenue for Broadway shows. In New York City, tourism is within the top four industries. For New York state, it tourism is the number two industry. Celebrities like Tom Hanks, Bette Midler, David Hyde Pierce, and Sigourney Weaver, provide the star power to sell tickets and keep shows running. Premium seats and available at the actual theater and through the online websites, including TheaterMania and BroadwayBox.com.