A Tony Awards sweep by the musical about Alexander Hamilton could create excitement and boost attendance at Broadway shows. Fred Katayama reports.
The buzz over Broadway is whether "Hamilton" will sweep the Tony Awards this Sunday. That's the musical about America's first Treasury Secretary done to a rap beat featuring a diverse cast. But even shows that don't win get a lift just by being nominated or performing on the nationally broadcast awards show. One of producer Ken Davenport's shows, "Spring Awakening," is up for a Tony this year. SOUNDBITE: KEN DAVENPORT, BROADWAY PRODUCER, (ENGLISH) SAYING: "I graphed this out on my blog a few years ago during the season of "Gentleman's Guide" and "Beautiful," and what we saw was an immediate rise at the box office when nominations were announced because there was such a high quantity of them." And if a show wins a big award, it gets an immediate boost at the box office. A sweep by "Hamilton" could be big for Broadway overall. Steven Chaikelson teaches theatre management at Columbia. SOUNDBITE: STEVEN CHAIKELSON, PROFESSOR, COLUMBIA UNIVERSITY SCHOOL OF THE ARTS, (ENGLISH) SPEAKING: "We'll see a big increase in ticket sales for Broadway overall since it will create a lot of excitement about Broadway shows in general." And even if "Hamilton" fails to sweep, tickets are so hard to get that fans could be lured to other shows they see on the Tony Awards program, filling more seats on the Great White Way.