West Side History in the Making

West Side History in the Making

Classic Musical Sets Box Office Record for Broadway's Palace Theatre

When plans were announced to revive the 1957 hit musical West Side Story this season, theatergoers and critics questioned whether the Eisenhower-era paean to Romeo and Juliet would find an audience in our twenty-first century age of iPods and Blu-Rays. The answer is a resounding "yes". On April 13th, producers of the smash hit Broadway production announced that West Side Story has shattered box office records for highest weekly gross at the Palace Theatre for two consecutive weeks - no mean feat in a recession period that sees some Broadway shows struggling to stay afloat.

The Palace's box office record was previously held by Legally Blonde the Musical for the week ending 12/30/07 (Christmas week) with $1,219,488.  For the week ending 4/5/09, West Side Story broke that record with $1,234,652 and then last week, for the week ending 4/12/09, shattered its own record with an impressive weekly gross of $1,308,787.  The producers have also announced that the national tour of this production will begin in the fall of 2010.  Tour route, dates and casting will be announced shortly.

West Side Story's box office success is even more impressive when you consider that the Palace Theatre isn't exactly a spring chicken; in fact, the curtain first rose on its stage in March 1913, and the venue played host to early twentieth-century luminaries ranging from Eddie Cantor to Bob Hope. In 1941, The Palace was the theater where Citizen Kane received its world premier, and throughout the 1950s, everybody who was anybody performed there, from Frank Sinatra to Judy Garland to Jerry Lewis. The theater is currently owned and operated by the Nederlander Organization and Stewart F. Lane, and in recent years has served as the Broadway home for notable productions including Disney's Beauty and the Beast and Aida.

For more information about The Palace Theatre, click here

For more information about the current revival of West Side Story click here

If you would information about West Side Story performance rights, click here