‘Hamilton’ to return to Providence’s PPAC

Updated at 6:06 p.m.

THE THREE-WEEK RUN for "Hamilton" at the Providence Performing Arts Center this past summer netted millions in economic impact for the city, according to a report released Sept. 24. / COURTESY JOAN MARCUS

PROVIDENCE – The three-week, sold-out run for “Hamilton” at the Providence Performing Arts Center this past summer was such a box-office success that the musical is coming back for an encore during the 2021-2022 season.

“They have allowed us to say it will be returning,” PPAC President J.L “Lynn” Singleton told Providence Business News on Tuesday.

Nearly 73,000 theatergoers saw the show, making “Hamilton” the biggest summer Broadway draw in PPAC’s history.

“What ended up making it dramatic was because it was in the last couple of weeks in July and August, generally when downtown is like a wasteland. We poured 73,000 people into the city at a time when you probably couldn’t get enough people downtown to play flag football,” Singleton said.

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Ticket holders spent millions of dollars in Providence, according to an economic impact study that PPAC released.

Direct spending was estimated at $3.5 million, while the total direct economic impact was about $7.6 million, according to the study by Advantage Marketing Information.

More than 72% of audience members made purchases at local restaurants, spending an estimated $2.4 million.

In addition, more than half of the show’s audiences were from out of state, with the majority coming from Massachusetts.

Many people were younger than typical Broadway patrons and went out to bars and restaurants after the show, as well as before, Singleton said, adding that the cast enjoyed Providence’s nightlife as well.

Results from the economic-impact study were based on survey questions sent to the original ticket buyers. Of the 25,000 people surveyed, 5,000 responded, Singleton said.

“That’s a 20% return, it’s enormous,” he said. “We did it immediately after the show and we got a great response.”

Tickets for the 24 performances ranged from $83 to $298, with a digital lottery selecting 40 recipients per performance for $10 tickets.

The study also scored “customer delight” for the production at 90.9 out of 100. The mark is the highest that the Advantage Marketing team had seen for organizations.

“Hamilton,” which tells the story of American statesman Alexander Hamilton, debuted in New York in 2015, selling out theaters and winning rave reviews.

The next year, the production won a Grammy Award for best musical theater album and the Pulitzer Prize for drama.

(Corrects 13th paragraph on Advantage Marketing rating.)

Elizabeth Graham is a PBN staff writer. Email her at Graham@PBN.com. 

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