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Theatre Tickets On Sale Too Early?


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#1 Schuttep

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Posted 26 February 2013 - 10:53 AM

I've noticed over the past few years that I have a stock of theatre tickets of events still to see that is growing and growing. At the moment I have tickets for 43 upcoming shows.

I still see roughly the same amount of shows each year (around 75 - 90) but it seems to me that theatre tickets are being put on sale so far in advance that I am buying many many more well before the actual show.

For example, I bought all the Michael Grandage season over a year in advance of the start of the actual performances. Now I can see why he would want assurances that tickets would sell for what he might have seen as a "risky" venture, but it seems to me that more and more theatres and producers are trying to get us to buy tickets long before the actual shows themselves. Many West End shows are booking into 2014 already and I recently bought tickets for the Priscilla tour in Brighton for January 2014. But, unless my memory is flawed this didn't seem to happen so much just a few years ago.

I know I don't HAVE to buy tickets so far in advance but if I want decent seats for the shows I'd like to see, I feel obliged to go for it, meaning I have the assurance of getting good seats and producers have the assurance of a sold ticket.

Thoughts?
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#2 Lynette

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Posted 26 February 2013 - 11:35 AM

You have a point. It makes a buzz doesn't it, making you think that a show will sell out when they release tix early with all the media stuff.

For the Globe I have found that my fave seats do go v early for the whole season; for the RSC, it can be hard to get good stalls if you don't book early but not impossible as I have known people get good tix on the day and not queuing at dawn either. With the exception of anything with Judi Dench in it [ or maybe David Tennant too! ] you can get anything you like in the West End if you are a little bit flexible. The National is interesting as you can get last minute if you turn up but if there has been word of mouth momentum and the play is a 'hit' it can be hard to get tix. A real mega hit like 'Jerusalem ' at the Royal Court , will always transfer or return and you can get tix for the second coming as it were. Opera, you can get what you want above a certain price. So there is no need to bust a gut and hold so many tix in advacne unless you are like me and Schuttep, and like to plan ahead!
I bet you can get tix for the Michael Grandage season right up to the performances. But a myth has been born and will float on.
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#3 paplazaroo

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Posted 26 February 2013 - 03:28 PM

I noticed this when they announced and put on sale Oh What a Lovely War at Stratford East a few months ago for Feb 2014

#4 jaqs

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Posted 26 February 2013 - 04:35 PM

With the Grandage season for me it was a dive in quick to get the good cheapseats, which of course causes a problem when I end up with more important commitments and cant really swap them.

Book of mormon I booked forever ago because I knew it would likely sell very well, based on NYC and it would have a lotto rather than dayseats. Otherwise i dont generally book musicals or long runners in advance, as I hope for discounts/tkts/dayseats/paper the exception being if I'm taking someone. But I'm local and can be flexible.

I understand shows want a good advance but for a tour a couple of months is surely ample time.

#5 Latecomer

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Posted 26 February 2013 - 10:15 PM

Oxford New Theatre have their Xmas 2014 show on sale already....Dirty Dancing! Before they have announced this year's Xmas show!

#6 wickedgrin

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Posted 26 February 2013 - 11:29 PM

Yes - it is a new trend I think. The producers clearly want the money in their bank accounts rather than yours. I personally dislike booking too far ahead but as I go to the theatre on my own a great deal and am very flexible with dates I find I can pick up single seats very last minute - usually. Not for the Book of Mormon though! LOL

#7 Laughingmonsta

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Posted 26 February 2013 - 11:57 PM

Wicked Grin - unfortunately the £ doesn't go into a producers account till the show has gone ahead. This is to safe guard patrons money in case of a no-show etc.

It does however help the producer know in advance how much capitilsiation they will need to arrange to make the show open, most costs can be contra billed in various ways once the show has opened, but avast majority and usually the most expensive elements can't,
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#8 KevinUK

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Posted 27 February 2013 - 12:09 AM

I hardly ever buy in advance, and I never pay top price. I find that a mixture of spontaneity and Google means that on any given day, there are great seats to be had at less than the prices they tell you at the box office. However I do favour day seats anyway.
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#9 Jon

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Posted 27 February 2013 - 01:01 AM

I did it for The Book of Mormon and The Michael Grandage Company but I don't normally book more than a few months in advance. The Lion King UK Tour only intially announced its first two dates for 2012 before revealing its 2013 dates whereas Wicked has already announced some of its 2014 dates,

#10 mallardo

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Posted 27 February 2013 - 07:45 AM

I'm still trying imagine 43 sets of tickets in one pile.
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