Podcast Episode 119 – The Man Who Knows Where All The Numbers Are Buried, Broadway Accountant Robert Fried

It takes a lot of people to make sure Broadway keeps on running . . . from Tony Award winning Directors, Choreographers, Writers and so on.

And we’ve had so many of them on the podcast.

But there are a group of people who work in offices all around Times Square, who may not have the sexiest of Broadway professions, but they keep the business oiled up and operating like the billion dollar industry that it is.

And if you really want to know how the business works . . . you gotta talk to them.

So we did!

Today, I’m happy to introduce you to powerhouse Broadway Accountant, Robert Fried.  Robert has overseen the books on hundreds of Broadway shows.  Hundreds.  From School of Rock to Rent to Hamilton, Robert has seen tons of shows go from front money investments to subsidiary right bonanzas.  And, well, he’s seen a lot of shows in the “red” as well.

He’s given me fantastic financial advice over the years, which is why I wanted you to hear his perspective on our business and where it’s headed.  But we didn’t only talk numbers, we also talked about:

  • The one skill that separates some Producers from others.
  • What’s next for tax legislation on Broadway.
  • The current administration  . . . good or bad for Broadway.
  • The most important part of any budget for any show on Broadway, Off Broadway or wherever.
  • The London business model versus ours.  Which one is better?

And lots more . . . including how many investors he deals with on a regular basis (if you’re raising money for your show, you’re going to want to hear this).

A show’s books are only as good as your accountant.  You’re lucky if you’ve got someone like Robert looking over ’em.

Enjoy the podcast!

Click here for the link to my podcast with Robert!

Listen to it on iTunes here.  (And if you like the podcast, give it a great review, while you’re there!)

Download it here.

Sorry about the sound issues in this podcast. We found the bug and fixed it in later episodes. It gets better, I promise 🙂


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Ken created one of the first Broadway podcasts, recording over 250 episodes over 7 years. It features interviews with A-listers in the theater about how they “made it”, including 2 Pulitzer Prize Winners, 7 Academy Award Winners and 76 Tony Award winners. Notable guests include Pasek & Paul, Kenny Leon, Lynn Ahrens and more.