Broadway theatre,[nb 1] commonly known as Broadway, refers to the theatrical performances presented in the 41 professional theatreswith 500 or more seats located in the Theater District and Lincoln Center along Broadway, in Midtown Manhattan, New York City. Along with London's West End theatre, Broadway theatre is widely considered to represent the highest level of commercial theatre in the English-speaking world.
The Theater District is a popular tourist attraction in New York City. According to The Broadway League, for the 2016–2017 season (which ended May 21, 2017), total attendance was 13,270,343 and Broadway shows had US$1,449,399,149 in grosses, with attendance down 0.4%, grosses up 5.5%, and playing weeks down 4.1%.
The great majority of Broadway shows are musicals. Historian Martin Shefter argues, "'Broadway musicals,' culminating in the productions of Richard Rodgers and Oscar Hammerstein, became enormously influential forms of American popular culture" and helped make New York City the cultural capital of the nation.