Since Grammy-nominated singer-songwriter Sara Bareilles made her Broadway debut in the musical “Waitress” on March 31, fans have been flocking to the show. They have just 10 weeks to see her take on the role of the title character, a woman who works as a server in a diner but hopes to serves up a winning pie in a contest. Her first Saturday evening performance (April 1) set a new house record at the Brooks Atkinson Theatre with ticket sales of $180,026 and she bested that benchmark on April 8, with sales of $184,559. Now comes word that she ended the eight-show week on April 16 by setting a house record of $1,381,419.90 in sales.
While this talented tunesmith had to learn her lines, she already knew all the words to the songs as she wrote them. Bareilles, whose smash debut disc “Little Voice” reached #1 in 22 countries, earned a Tony Award nomination for Best Score. She was bested by Lin-Manuel Miranda who crafted the songs for the blockbuster “Hamilton.” Bareilles and company also contended for Best Musical Theater Album at the recent Grammys but were edged out by “The Color Purple.”
“Waitress” is adapted from a 2007 indie movie of the same name about a woman torn between her abusive husband and the town’s new physician. The musical version debuted on Broadway in April 2016 with Tony winner Jessie Mueller (“Beautiful”) in the leading role. It earned four Tony nominations, including Best Musical and a bid for Mueller.
Be sure to make your Tony Awards predictions. Weigh in now with your picks so that Broadway insiders can see how their shows and performers are faring in our Tony odds. You can keep changing your predictions until just before nominees are announced on May 2. And join in the fierce debate over the 2017 Tony Awards taking place right now in our theater forums.