Monday, May 08, 2006

Broadway Becomes Like Opera: Only For The Super-Rich

I was wondering why it had become so remarkably difficult to buy decent tickets to a Broadway show even six months in advance. Now I know: Broadway producers have spread "premium" tickets -- tickets costing $200 or more for prime seats -- from just a phenomenon like "The Producers" to literally every show on Broadway, even flops like "Well." They're holding back 100+ seats(sometimes much more)until the last moment. That just puts good seats to good shows that much farther out of the reach of regular theatergoers and the NEXT generation of theatergoers. Broadway is now turning into the province of corporate clients and the super wealthy, which will make it that much harder to keep the business thriving and growing. London -- where tickets are often half the price and you can actually call the box office and get them set aside -- is more and more the place to be for serious theatergoers. Unless you work for a Fortune 500 company and can use the tickets as a write-off. Truly depressing news. PS. And just as I finished this, I got an email that "Well" was closing. That would have happened anyway, but there might well have been theatergoers who would have been able to see this well-reviewed play if they hadn't been shut out of the best seats.

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