How to get in to a Broadway show for free or cheap

3 Sep

It was last summer, and I was bored on a Sunday night when I remembered a story my dad told me about being in the city on business years ago. He landed a center orchestra seat to “Annie” on Broadway for free by hanging around the theater and mentioning to a few people that he was looking for just one ticket (going alone is optimal). A guy had a friend who was home throwing up or something, so YAY!, they gave my dad the free ticket.

These things happen. You might not get the ticket free, but if someone’s in a bind, negotiate. Of course, there’s always the chance that no one will be needing to unload a ticket at the show you want to see, but just go to another theater! If you can get a bargain by buying a ticket off someone (NOT a scalper, but someone who’s just in a jam), who knows what you might want to see!

That said, do this discreetly. An usher shooed me away from Mary Poppins once under the guise he was afraid I’d get scalped. I had made an 8.5×11 sign that said “Need 1 ticket please (smiley face)!” What’s not to love? Well, that, I guess. I didn’t get arrested or anything, but do this at your own risk.

Slightly-less-last-minute options: If you’re not familiar with TKTS and/or following them on Twitter, do it now; it’s the best way to find out what’s on discount today.

Rush and standing room: Here are the recently updated policies for the shows playing now. This makes me want to see so many things — again or for the first time!


3 Responses to “How to get in to a Broadway show for free or cheap”

  1. FrugalNYC 09/08 at 6:24 pm #

    Hi Sarah!

    Just saw this post and wanted to let you and your readers know. There will be a giveaway on FrugalNYC starting tomorrow. Phantom of the Opera tickets AND $100 Gift Certificate for a restaurant. Can’t be that 😉

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  1. Broadway shows and you | NewNewYorkers - 01/09

    […] I still saved for and bought theater tickets. All of a sudden I could hop on the train and be in my seat at a Broadway show in 20 minutes? I was beside myself — and I knew I’d rather spend extra money on […]

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