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'Hamilton' musical making a mint on Broadway

'Hamilton' musical making a mint on Broadway
Christopher Jackson portrays George Washington during a performance of the musical "Hamilton" at the Richard Rodgers Theatre in New York. (Joan Marcus / Sam Rudy Media Relations)

As this country's first secretary of the Treasury, Alexander Hamilton would surely be proud that the new musical named after him is making a respectable mint on Broadway.

"Hamilton," the multi-culti, hip-hop retelling of the Federalist founding father's life, has drawn bipartisan audience support from the likes of Barack and Michelle Obama, as well as Dick and Lynne Cheney. The new musical by Lin-Manuel Miranda has consistently grossed more than $1 million on a weekly basis since it began performances last month at the Richard Rodgers Theatre in New York.

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A rare major musical to open during Broadway's traditionally fallow months of summer, "Hamilton" got off to a strong start on its first weekend of preview performances, bringing in $1.3 million at the box office. Its grosses rose the following two weeks but fell off slightly in the most recent week ending Sunday, during which it officially opened to enthusiastic reviews.

"Hamilton" has consistently ranked among the top 10-grossing shows on Broadway, and on one week even grossed more money than "The Book of Mormon." ("Hamilton" plays at a larger theater than "Mormon.")

Box office figures were provided by the Broadway League, a nonprofit industry group based in New York.  A spokesman for the show said on Wednesday that the advance on the Broadway run now stands at more than $30 million.

He said that producers are generally not commenting on the business side of "Hamilton."

The spokesman previously confirmed that the show's Broadway investment stands at about $12 million. Most Broadway musicals cost between $10 million to $16 million to produce.

"Hamilton" transferred from New York's Public Theater, where it opened in February in a much smaller space with fewer than 400 seats. The show benefited from strong word of mouth, celebrity audience members and glowing early reviews -- though it was known primarily as the most unobtainable ticket in town.

The show stars Miranda as the "ten-dollar founding father" (the role is played at some performances by Javier Munoz), and features such familiar historical figures as George Washington, James Madison and England's King George III.

Elsewhere on Broadway, two other recent openings proved that summer can be kind to new shows. "An Act of God," the comedy play starring Jim Parsons at Studio 54, recouped its $2.9 million capitalization in 10 weeks. The show, which was the first production of the new Broadway season, ended its limited run on Aug. 2.

"Penn & Teller on Broadway" has also recouped its investment, which was about $2.9 million. The show opened July 12 and will end its run at the Marquis Theatre on Sunday.

On the other hand, "Amazing Grace," the new musical about the man who wrote the lyrics to the popular hymn, has been struggling at the Broadway box office since opening last month to mediocre reviews.

Twitter: @DavidNgLAT 
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