South Pacific helps increase attendance at Guthrie Theater

South Pacific, the highest revenue-grossing show on record at the Guthrie, played a big role in boosting audience numbers this year.
Author:
Updated:
Original:

The Guthrie Theater managed to get more butts on seats this year despite reducing the number of shows at the iconic Minneapolis venue.

In the first full year under artistic director Joseph Haj, the downtown theater turned a modest surplus of $47,408 on its $28 million budget in 2015/16 – about double the surplus it made last year, it announced this week.

This was achieved despite a smaller budget than in 2014/15 – which was its largest ever as donations rolled in for Joe Downling's last year as director – that saw the total number of productions reduced to 29 across its three stages.

Despite this, total attendance grew to 380,108 – 1,570 more than last year – with shows playing to 84 percent of capacity on average throughout the season.

A large part of Haj's successful first year is down to the Guthrie's production of Rodgers and Hammerstein's South Pacific, which Haj himself directed.

It has gone down as the highest-grossing show at the theater, the Guthrie said in its news release.

"I am incredibly proud of the season we put forth in 2015-2016 and so moved by this community's overwhelming response to the art onstage," Haj said.

"I am committed to ensuring that the Guthrie is a theater that belongs to the community it is charged to serve, and I’m excited by the steps we took to further patron engagement around our programming and look forward to advancing that work," he added.

The Guthrie said 24 percent of the theater's tickets this year went to students, teachers and other community members free of charge or heavily discounted, costing no more than $10.

Other highlights of the year included To Kill a Mockingbird, anda production of Shakespeare's Trouble in Mind.

Currently bringing in crowds to the Wurtele Thrust stage is the annual production of A Christmas Carol, you can read GoMN's review here.

Next Up

police lights

Three teens charged in Minneapolis robberies

The incidents took place on Saturday in Minneapolis.

covid-19, coronavirus, ppe

Here is Minnesota's COVID-19 update for Thursday, January 21

It's the first time in exactly four months that Minnesota has had fewer than 100 COVID patients in intensive care.

icy roads, bad roads

Girl, 16, killed in crash with semi on icy Minnesota road

The crash happened in Dodge County around 8 a.m. Wednesday.

police lights

Road rage incident sees driver punch out man's window, punch him in face

The incident happened in Waite Park Wednesday morning.

Screen Shot 2019-10-11 at 7.01.24 AM

Minneapolis will recover $100K in costs connected to 2019 Trump rally

The Target Center operator said it'll pay the costs over three years.

Jacob Frey

Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey confirms run for reelection

He has faced criticism over the city's response to George Floyd's death.

Kirk Cousins

Coller: How far away are the Vikings from playing championship weekend?

Matthew Coller writes a weekly Vikings column for BMTN, with more of his work found at Purple Insider.

ambulance

1 dead, 1 airlifted following head-on crash in Stearns County

A 48-year-old died and a 35-year-old suffered life-threatening injuries.

fire truck

1 person killed, another injured in fire at Hudson home

The amount of "combustible material" in the home made it difficult for firefighters.

nichole's fine pastry and cafe

Guy Fieri's visit to Fargo cafe for 'Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives' will air soon

Over the summer, Fieri visited several restaurants in the Fargo-Moorhead area.

EsQrv2rXYAMbPFa

2 dead in St. Paul shooting Thursday morning

A homicide investigation is underway.

ambulance

One dead in head-on crash in west-central Minnesota

The incident occurred on Highway 27 near 150th Avenue.

Related

Guthrie theater

Coronavirus: Guthrie Theater lays off more than 200 employees

The Guthrie's largest source of income is ticket sales. It hasn't had a performance since March.

Screen Shot 2020-01-29 at 9.43.31 AM

Guthrie Theater to close for rest of 2020, only 3 plays booked for 2021

The celebrated Minneapolis theater won't re-open till March next year.

Screen Shot 2020-01-29 at 9.43.31 AM

Guthrie Theater cancels rest of its 2019/20 season

Several productions scheduled for this spring and summer have been canceled.

The Guthrie - virtual A Christmas Carol

The Guthrie's virtual telling of 'A Christmas Carol' available starting next week

This marks the 46th consecutive year the Guthrie has produced the Charles Dickens' holiday classic.

Late Night host Seth Meyers will perform at the State Theatre

The SNL alum will bring his acerbic style to the stage

Flashy new movie theater will replace the old one at Mall of America

Fancy food and cocktails replaces Milk Duds and pop at the new Mall of America movie theater.