West End enjoys record box office in 2011
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West End enjoys record box office in 2011

2nd February 2012

Box office sales in the West End have increased for the eighth consecutive year, thanks to sold-out productions such as Frankenstein, Richard III and The Wizard of Oz, official figures reveal.

Data published by the Society of London Theatre (Solt) shows that takings topped GBP 528.3 million in 2011, which is up 3.1 per cent on a like-for-like basis when compared with 2010, which itself was a record-breaking year.

Overall attendance for last year stood at 13.9 million, which is down 1.73 per cent on 2010, although this can be attributed to a number of theatres temporarily closing while new productions were set up.

According to Solt, the growth in sales could be attributed to sold-out productions such as the musical version of Roald Dahl's Matilda, Danny Boyle's stage adaptation of Mary Shelley's Frankenstein and Sam Mendes' interpretation of Richard III at the Old Vic, starring Kevin Spacey.

Solt president Mark Rubinstein said he was 'extremely proud' that theatres have achieved another record-breaking year of sales.

'Despite the prevailing rigours of the economic climate, theatre-goers have acted with their feet and wallets,' he added.

Solt is predicting that 2012 will be another record-breaking year at the West End box office, driven by productions including the new stage version of L. Frank Baum's classic tale The Wizard of Oz and enduring favourites such as Les Miserables, which is now in the 26th year of its theatrical run.

© W&G Foyle Ltd