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A general manager of a Broadway production oversees and directs operations to ensure success of a show. These professionals handle the business aspects of the production, including overseeing daily operations, sales and marketing of the production and financial budgets. In May 2010, the Bureau of Labor Statistics estimated the salary for general managers in the theater company industry, which includes Broadway productions.
Most of these professionals start their career as a director or producer and move into a general manager role. The producer of a Broadway show often seeks the services of a general manager after the show has been developed and is ready to start production. The general manager then works on a production budget and weekly operating budget, according to Broadway University. From the first weeks of rehearsal to the final show, the general manager ensures the production is successful and profitable.
Most general managers of Broadway productions receive a fee to start the project, then a salary when the show is open to the public. Some general managers will work with one or several producers throughout their career, while others move onto other shows, venues and careers in related industries. In this niche industry, general managers must be successful to increase their salary and move into larger, more profitable productions.
The bureau estimated there are about 1,250 general managers in theater companies, which includes Broadway productions. This includes large productions that can run for months or even years to smaller productions with only several shows. Many Broadway productions promote their show nationally and internationally, which can require the general manager and his staff to travel extensively. Some Broadway productions continue onto venues and shows throughout the country after success on Broadway, which is a theater district in New York City. The average salary was $87,810 per year for this occupation.
Salary can vary extensively for a Broadway general manager depending on the producer’s budget and estimated revenue of the production. Salaries ranged from $36,180 to $162,090 per year, including the bureau’s 10th through 90th percentiles. The 25th percentile earned $52,220 per year and the 75th percentile earned $105,140 per year.
- Bureau of Labor Statistics: Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2010-11 Edition: Top Executives
- Bureau of Labor Statistics: Occupational Employment and Wages, May 2010: General and Operations Managers OES, May 2010
- Bureau of Labor Statistics: May 2010 National Industry-Specific Occupational Employment and Wage Estimates: Theater and Dinner Theater Companies OES, May 2010
- Broadway University: The Role of a General Manager -- Part I