My friend Joyce and I took the train to Manhattan and stood in line for Hamilton tickets last week (see my previous post for details and photos). We were prepared with toothbrushes and a Hotels Tonight app in case we had to go to the evening show and spend the night in the city, but we got in to the matinee.
Standing in line for “Rush” tickets is a wonderful New York experience that everyone should have. ( Exactly the opposite experience of my German Pilates instructor; he spent Easter weekend in the city, and was bemoaning the fact that in a city of 8 million, when you walk around the city, no one talks to you.) We met so many interesting people, but also learned a ton about how to get tickets for BIG Broadway shows for less than the going price.
Two twentysomething school teachers were standing with a young paralegal in front of us in line who was waiting for evening tickets to the show. They had seen absolutely every new show on Broadway and were happy to stand for two hours and chat with us about their favorites. The man behind us, who was from New Jersey but has an apartment on 8th and 49th for weekend trips to the city, opened his notes on his phone to tell us about the off-Broadway and Broadway shows he had seen this year, and the list numbered over 50. So these were avid theatergoers! Here’s their advice:
- Join TDF. We did and immediately found tix for $48 to the newest opening sensation opening last night, Groundhog Day.
- Go to broadwayforbrokepeople to see which shows sell rush tickets or have lotteries. Rush may require standing in line for a few hours, or may have seats for sale as soon as the box office opens.
- See what the public thinks about a show, which may be different from the critics’ reviews, at show-score. This will give you a nice list of faves based on a crowd-sourced scoring model.
- For less popular shows, try todaytix — an app for your phone. Prices vary, but Joyce got $40 seats for Bandstand that were better than the full price seats she had bought for her kids the month before!
So based on our new friends’ suggestions, we are heading to Groundhog Day tomorrow ( New York Times gave it rave reviews today) and I plan on getting TDF tix to Sweat and Bandstand before the month is out. Woo hoo! We love the theater!