Nov 20, 2008

Venue Attrition

Apologies if another writer in my bloggerhood has already posted on this new study by the New York Innovative Theatre Foundation about the fortunes of Off-0ff-Broadway venues, which I found sobering. To wit:

Over 25% of OOB venues in both the West Village and Midtown area have either been demolished or repurposed into non-performance spaces in the last 5 years

43% of all OOB venues are located in the West Side Midtown area of Manhattan

The East Village, which only accounts for 14% of the overall OOB venues, is currently presenting 30% of the OOB productions

Those stats about Midtown, the East Village, and the Theatre District are a little confusing--they seem to contradict each other, or at least to indicate that though there's a concentration of OOB venues near the Theatre District, Downtown venues still stage a disproportionate number of OOB shows.

Shay Gines, the foundation's executive director, spells it out a bit more clearly: "Over the last 5 years, we have lost 26% of the Off-Off-Broadway stages in the Midtown area. We have watched a steady decline in the number of productions that are taking place in the 'theatre district.' Even more disturbing is the fact that of the 30 Off-Off-Broadway houses in the Greenwich Village area, over 25% have already been lost and with the displacement of the theatres from the Archive Building, that percentage increases to 40%."

I imagine we'll see a more in-depth post on this from Leonard any minute now.

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