Oct. 29 (Bloomberg) -- As Sandy the hurricane swept up the East Coast, Sandy the canine star of “Annie” lay on a couch in upper Manhattan with a rope toy.
“She’s been lounging all day,” said Dustin Harder, the 31-year-old handler of the mutt who goes by “Sunny” when not performing in the Broadway revival. “Great, we have a day off. Now it’s like, ‘what do we do?’”
That question was uttered by many in New York, with evening shows canceled Sunday, Monday and Tuesday. Sunday matinees that did go on suffered, as area residents focused on filling refrigerators ahead of the storm rather than leisure.
“If you look at grosses, they’re going to be way down,” said Debbie Bisno, the lead producer of the drama “Grace,” starring Paul Rudd and Michael Shannon, which has until its January 6, 2013 closing to earn back its roughly $2.5 million capitalization.
“Every performance counts,” she said. “This is not a good thing for anybody.”
While Sunday evening and Monday are dark for many shows, others play different schedules. “The Book of Mormon,” “The Phantom of the Opera,” “Chicago,” “Newsies,” “Mary Poppins” and “Evita” were among productions forced to cancel performances, according to the Broadway League, a trade association of producers and theater owners.
All shows will lose income from canceled Tuesday performances.
With public transportation suspended, theater district mainstays such as Orso, on West 46th Street, were closed. Angus McIndoe was open, but Carlos Ventura, the head chef, said that at about 2 p.m. Monday he and a lone waiter were covering seven tables.
“This definitely does hurt,” Ventura said.
During a 19-day stagehands strike in 2007, Karen Hauser, research director of the League, estimated that the economic impact of the strike was about $8 million a day.
With Halloween and election day approaching, it’s typically a “slumpy” time on Broadway, storm or no storm, Bisno said.
“If it were during Christmas, I’d be upset,” she said. “I’d rather be anxious for just one week.”
Muse highlights include Jeffrey Burke on books.
-- Editors: Jeremy Gerard, Daniel Billy.
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