Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Omigod, great gifts

NYC -- Broadway show merchandising is big business, I don't have to tell you.

Here are two of my favorites, spotted at shows last week.

Most clever -- A monkey wearing an "Inherit the Wind" T-shirt, a nod to the play's treatment of the Scopes Monkey Trial in Tenneesee.

Most valley -- T-shirt from "Legally Blonde" with the official catchphrase from that show: "omigod."

Operators are standing by. -- Michael Kilgore/TBPAC

1 comment:

Dominick F., bean counter/TBPAC said...

If anyone at TBPAC wants to fully understand how big Broadway show merchandising is, may I suggest a pleasant conversation with Richard (Rick) Brown, the Center’s retail boss extraordinaire.

As Rick has shown me, the dollars spent on Broadway merchandise is mind boggling (i.e. Spamalot & Wicked are two recent credulity-stretchers), which is why each Broadway show tries very hard to negotiate terms with Rick so that they get to keep most of the net revenue for themselves. The favorite negotiating position of producers is just to give TBPAC a flat rate buy-out to allow their merchandising activity here; we would prefer a reasonable percentage of gross sales, which would result in a much larger take for the Center.

Of course, merchandising isn’t reserved solely for Broadway shows—shows in more intimate venues like the Shimberg, such as The March of the Kitefliers, have their own related merchandise, like T-shirts. But I imagine smaller production companies like Jobsite (barring any special dispensations) would not have the negotiating clout of Broadway shows when it comes to merchandising terms, for obvious reasons.

Amazing how much people (including me) are willing to spend for woven cotton garments with silk screened messages on them, in order to make a statement of sorts! Experience has taught me that in this high tech world, strangers still take the time to read these low tech messages bodily carried by other complete strangers.

Dominick, bean counter/TBPAC