'Once' to End Broadway Run

Joan Marcus

Based on director John Carney's 2007 Oscar-winning film, the show will close Jan. 4

Following a stay of just under three years, Once will wrap up its Broadway run Jan. 4, 2015. 

The news comes as the show is in the process of expanding across the globe. Once is currently playing in Melbourne and in London's West End, with productions soon to open in Toronto and Seoul. Starting in November, Japan is to host a multi-week engagement of the U.S. tour, which launched in fall 2013.

Sales for the Broadway incarnation have lagged of late. At its peak, the production would regularly pull in north of $1 million per week, breaking house records at the Bernard B. Jacobs Theatre. But in the week ending Oct. 5, it grossed just $358,134, playing at 66 percent of capacity. 

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The production nonetheless has been a success, recouping its $5.5 million initial investment in just 21 weeks. Cumulative box office on Broadway to date stands at $103 million.

Based on director John Carney's 2007 Oscar-winning film of the same name, Once opened on Broadway in March 2012. The show won eight Tony awards, including best musical, and launched the career of star Cristin Milioti, who is currently starring in the NBC sitcom A to Z

The production also swept other theater honors for best musical, including the New York Drama Critics Circle Award, and its cast recording won a 2013 Grammy for best musical theater album.

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Glen Hansard and Marketa Irglova wrote the music, with the book by Enda WalshJohn Tiffany directed, and Steven Hoggett provided choreography. The story centers on an Irish singer-songwriter and a Czech immigrant who develop a complicated bond and make music together over a few days in Dublin. 

The London production wraps its run on March 21, 2015, before embarking on a European tour. Productions are also in development for Sweden, Brazil, Holland, Greece, Czech Republic, Thailand and Ireland, along with a Japanese-language version.

Once has been far more successful than other recent Broadway musicals based on films, including Rocky, Bullets Over Broadway, The Bridges of Madison County and Big Fish, all of which closed at a loss during the past theater season. 

When it concludes its Broadway run, Once will have played 1,167 regular performances and 22 previews.