By Gene Axton, Wilkes-Barre Times Leader
WILKES-BARRE — The F.M. Kirby Center for the Performing Arts has climbed five slots as one of the top 200 theaters in the world.
In 2015, the venue ranked No. 114 and moved up to No. 109 in 2016 on the Top 200 theaters list from concert tour industry trade publication “Pollstar.” The list is created by the publication using ticket sales from the 2016 calendar year.
Earlier in 2016, “Pollstar” placed F.M. Kirby Center at No. 99 in its mid-year rankings.
“Last year marked our first time in the top 200, so I guess breaking into the top 100 is the next thing we should logically shoot for,” said Executive Director Will Beekman. “That being said, all we really care about is improving and getting better at what we do. That’s what feels so good about climbing five spots from last year.”
The venue sold 60,000 tickets in 2016 — nearly 7,500 more than 2015. Events counted toward the year-long total for the Kirby Center include Kacey Musgraves’ Christmas concert, Steve Miller Band’s performance and a night with Theresa Caputo, the Long Island Medium.
Among Pennsylvania theaters on the list, the Kirby Center ranks No. 6 behind Academy of Music (Philadelphia), Stage AE (Pittsburgh), Keswick Theater (Glenside), Hershey Theater (Hershey) and Sands Bethlehem Event Center (Bethlehem). The top three theaters on the list are Mexico City’s Auditorio Nacional, New York’s Radio City Music Hall and London’s Royal Albert Hall.