In New York City and in major regional playhouses around the country, tickets range anywhere from $50 to $250 a seat for performances. In the current economy, this makes theater look like a luxury. There are, however, ways to see budget theater and enjoy a fantastic show without emptying your pocketbook. It’s a great choice for leisure time on a budget.
Previews. These are performances before the official opening night. The actors and designers benefit from these performances to polish up before a run. Some companies have only one preview, but many major regional theaters have several. You can even subscribe at a preview level, saving up to 25% off the full price ticket.
Group Sales. Most theaters offer discounts for group sales. They may have a special two for one night or can offer discounts for groups of ten or more. If you can gather up a group to go, you can all experience the show for less than the advertised ticket price.
Volunteer. Many companies employ a mostly volunteer house staff to help patrons into their seats. By volunteering to be an usher, you to be there about an hour before the house opens and for a while afterwards to help clean up the theater, but otherwise you can enjoy the show in any empty seat for free.
Community Theater. Most people focus on regional theaters and national tour productions but there is a lot of theater that happens within the community. These shows are generally under $20. As developing artists or self-funded performance groups, it may not be a flashy Broadway show with full sets and costumes, but theater-lovers will still feel they are brought into a world by local artists dedicated to the craft of making theater happen.
Many people love the excitement of going to see a show, but are stymied by the high price tag. With these tips and more, budget theater that will wow you is within your grasp!