Industry Pro Newsletter: The Second City Announces New York Opening, Prominent NYC Theater Leaders are Departing Their Roles

And in a significant step forward for Hollywood, the WGA and AMPTP have reached a tentative agreement to end the Writer’s Strike.

By: Sep. 25, 2023
Industry Pro Newsletter: The Second City Announces New York Opening, Prominent NYC Theater Leaders are Departing Their Roles

The Writers Strike is (likely) coming to an end - with a tentative agreement, Hollywood has taken a major step toward getting back to work. In New York, major changes to the leadership landscape are pending as both Carole Rothman and André Bishop announced that they will be departing their posts at Second Stage and Lincoln Center Theater, respectively. Leadership changes also continue on the regional front, and Cara Joy David takes a look at the evolving ticketing landscape of Broadway.

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Industry Trends

Writers Guild Reaches Tentative Agreement to End Strike - BroadwayWorld

The Writers Guild of America (WGA) has reached a tentative agreement to end its strike against the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers (AMPTP). This article from BroadwayWorld reports on the breakthrough in negotiations, potentially bringing an end to the strike that has disrupted the television and film industry. While specific details of the agreement are not provided, this development is a positive step towards resolving the labor dispute and ensuring fair compensation and working conditions for writers. Click here to read more…

James McKnight Appointed as CEO of Andrew Lloyd Webber's Really Useful Group - BroadwayWorld

James McKnight has been appointed as the new CEO of Andrew Lloyd Webber's Really Useful Group. McKnight's extensive experience in the entertainment industry positions him to play a crucial role in shaping the future of the Really Useful Group. Click here to read more…

Broadway/New York

Industry Trends Weekly: Ticketmaster, Broadway Direct, Ticket Fees and the Truth by Cara Joy David

Last week, Forbes ran a piece about The Nederlander Organization, Broadway's second biggest landlord, leaving Ticketmaster. The piece was fairly light on details, so confusion spread, and I read a bunch of incorrect takes. This piece (filed well before sundown Sunday) is my attempt to provide some clarification.

In April, I wrote about how shows at Nederlander theaters were available for direct sale on Ticketmaster, the Nederlander-owned Broadway Direct, and the Shubert-owned Telecharge. At that point, Broadway Direct was far from new, it had already been selling tickets for some time. There were grumblings that Nederlander would officially launch Broadway Direct as a primary ticket seller with a release and maybe an article in The Times. That never happened and what we’ve seen is a slow rollout.

In early summer, the ticketing link on shows’ websites started changing to Broadway Direct. In July, The Lion King even made an announcement that Broadway Direct was now the official online seller for the show. But all the Nederlander shows still remained on Ticketmaster, as they had been. In other words, if you go to Ticketmaster directly right now to buy Six tickets for this week, you will receive a pure Ticketmaster experience. (The ticketing processing on the backend is a little different than it was years ago, but that is irrelevant to ticket buyers.) That won’t change until early next year—and, to make things more confusing, it will change on a rolling basis. For example, the last day MJ will be available directly on Ticketmaster is January 21, but the last day Shucked will be available directly on Ticketmaster is February 11. (Nederlander road venues will be on Ticketmaster for a lot longer.) If you go right now to buy tickets to MJ on January 21, it is the old Ticketmaster experience. If you click on January 23, you receive a message stating the date, time, venue, “ON PARTNER SITE,” and a hyperlinked “Find tickets” linking to the MJ page on Broadway Direct.

I reached out to several producers with shows in Nederlander theaters and they are unclear what exactly will happen after their shows officially transition—whether the shows will still be listed in the same manner on Ticketmaster or not. Currently, for Shubert theater shows, for example, Ticketmaster has resale tickets listed and a link to the Shubert site (annoyingly not Telecharge, but the main Shubert Organization site) with the following statement: “Discover more ticket options for this show: purchase tickets from the venue site.” I imagine Nederlander shows will have at least that presence. Meanwhile, there is no indication Disney is dumping Ticketmaster as the primary ticketing agency for its theater, the New Amsterdam Theatre, so Aladdin will still be available directly on Ticketmaster. 

What all this means from a customer experience perspective is subjective. Every site says it offers a better customer experience. In terms of Broadway overall, it’s better for Broadway to have more avenues for direct sales. In my last story, I discussed why having so many individual sites with different tickets is problematic. So, for Broadway, it would be great if shows were available directly always on Ticketmaster, SeatGeak, ATG Tickets, Telecharge, and Broadway Direct. But that’s not the world we’re currently in. Story continues, click here to read more…

The Second City Reveals Opening Date, Shows, and Cast for NYC Location - BroadwayWorld

The Second City comedy theater is set to open its New York City location on November 1st, 2023. The lineup includes a variety of shows and talented cast members, promising laughter and entertainment for NYC audiences. Click here to read more…

Mayor Adams Convenes NYC's First-Ever Live Performance Industry Council - BroadwayWorld

Mayor Eric Adams has established NYC's inaugural Live Performance Industry Council. The council's purpose is to address and discuss critical issues faced by the city's entertainment industry, fostering collaboration and solutions for the challenges plaguing the sector. Click here to read more…

Carole Rothman to Step Down from NY's Second Stage - American Theatre Magazine

Carole Rothman, the founding artistic director of New York's Second Stage Theater, will step down from her role in 2024. Rothman's remarkable contributions to the theater and her legacy in supporting diverse voices in the arts have left an indelible mark on the industry. Click here to read more…

Lincoln Center Theater Leader André Bishop to Step Down - American Theatre Magazine

André Bishop, the esteemed leader of Lincoln Center Theater, is set to step down from his role. Having served as the artistic director since 1992, Bishop has made significant contributions to the world of theatre, overseeing numerous successful productions - it marks the end of an era for Lincoln Center Theater. Click here to read more…


The North Carolina Theatre Names Eric Woodall as New Executive Artistic Director - BroadwayWorld

BroadwayWorld reports that the North Carolina Theatre has appointed Eric Woodall as its new Executive Artistic Director. Woodall brings a wealth of experience in the theater industry and is expected to lead the theatre company in creating engaging and vibrant productions for audiences in North Carolina. Click here to read more…

Theater in DC Is Finding Its Stride Again Post-COVID - Washingtonian 

The Washingtonian sat down with Theatre Washington President Amy Austin and DC Actor Felicia Curry about the scenes recovery following the COVID-19 pandemic. The article discusses how the local theater scene is gradually recovering, with the return of live performances and renewed excitement from audiences and artists. Click here to read more…

Managing Director Elissa Wolf Departs Door Shakespeare - BroadwayWorld

Door Shakespeare is bidding farewell to its Managing Director, Elissa Wolf. This brief article from BroadwayWorld reports on Wolf's departure from the theatre company. While it doesn't delve into the specific reasons for her exit, it highlights the change in leadership at Door Shakespeare, leaving room for questions about the organization's future direction and the search for a new managing director to steer the company's artistic endeavors. Click here to read more…


How Independent Theatre Enriches the Local Arts Ecology - ArtsHub

This article on ArtsHub highlights the significance of independent theatre companies in Australia. It discusses how these companies contribute to the cultural fabric by providing platforms for emerging artists, promoting inclusivity, and offering unique artistic experiences. The article emphasizes that independent theatre not only complements mainstream productions but also influences the industry's growth and evolution, making it an essential component of the Australian arts landscape. Click here to read more…

Kitchener-Waterloo Symphony Files for Bankruptcy; Board Resigns - The Record

The Kitchener-Waterloo Symphony (KWS) has taken a dramatic step by filing for bankruptcy, resulting in the immediate resignation of its entire board. The orchestra cited financial challenges exacerbated by the pandemic as the primary reason for seeking bankruptcy protection. This move has raised concerns about the future of the KWS, a prominent Canadian arts institution, and the potential impact on the local cultural scene. The orchestra will need to restructure and find a way forward while grappling with its financial woes, leaving music enthusiasts and the community awaiting further developments. Click here to read more…

Missed our last few newsletters?

September 18, 2023 - Pulitzer Prize Eligibility Expands, San Francisco Theaters Explore New Leadership Models

Pulitzer Prize eligibility has expanded, now including permanent residents and long-term U.S. artists, a significant shift outlined in The Guardian. In the regional theater landscape, celebrated playwright Tarell Alvin McCraney takes the helm as Artistic Director of The Geffen Playhouse. Lastly, The Seattle Times emphasizes the crucial significance of Fall 2023 for Seattle's arts scene, and The Stage reports on the Torch Theatre in Wales facing damaging cuts due to a funding deficit, calling for community support. Click here to read more…

September 11, 2023 - Bay Area Children's Theatre Bankruptcy, Santa Cruz Shakespeare Thrives

This week, we invite you to nominate your favorite shows for the 2023 BroadwayWorld Regional Awards—as nominations open today and voting will begin later this fall. Cara Joy David takes us into the bankruptcy proceedings at Bay Area Children’s Theatre, and we look at leadership changes in Seattle, the reopening of Raue Center for the Arts, and what the secret sauce might be that is helping Santa Cruz Shakespeare thrive. In the UK, we celebrate the conclusion of our coverage of the 2023 Edinburgh Fringe, and look at infrastructure issues causing theatres to close. Click here to read more…

September 5, 2023 - Broadway Lawsuit Updates, Steppenwolf Lays off Staff Members
In this edition, we explore the evolving landscape of the theater world, from the challenges theaters face in retaining subscribers to the crucial role of touring physical therapists in supporting theater professionals on the road. We also dive into recent legal dramas within the industry and discuss the changing dynamics of off-Loop theater in Chicago. On the international front, we explore fundraising efforts in the UK arts sector led by none other than Vogue Editor Anna Wintour. Click here to read more…

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Should SHUCKEDs Unusual Path to Broadway Be Replicated? Photo
Should SHUCKED's Unusual Path to Broadway Be Replicated?

When SHUCKED opened on Broadway last week, it marked the first time a musical that tried out in Utah made it to the big time. We hear a lot about the more mainstream regional tryout venues—La Jolla Playhouse, the Old Globe, 5th Avenue Theatre—but very few producers utilize lesser-known non-profits to try out their shows.

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