(David Cote’s article appeared in the Guardian, 1/17.)
Never mind the 10% jobless rate or the middle-class-killing recession: Americans still flock to the pricey bread and circus of Broadway. In 2010, the Great White Way had a boffo year, taking in $1.037bn, a notch up from 2009's haul of $1.004bn. According to figures released by the Broadway League, attendance increased from 11.88 million to 12.11 million over the same period. The holiday week ending 2 January was arguably the most profitable in Broadway history: a total take amongst 35 shows of close to $35m. Clearly, tourists – and a smattering of locals – are willing to plunk down hard-earned coin for two hours of web-slinging spiders, green witches and pirouetting coal-miner sons (Britain's Billy Elliot is nicely ensconced in Broadway's million-dollar club).