Watching Shows for Free

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Watching Shows for Free

Postby bradisntclever » August 13th, 2007, 3:19 am

Maestro shows have been sold out (and even over-sold) every week for nearly two months now. Even when individuals working in the box take extreme care not to sell more tickets than we have seats for in the upstairs theater, problems with seating tend to arise.

All AIC members have the privilege to see shows at the Hideout for free under the condition that seats are still available once the show starts. If you want to sit in a seat to watch Maestro, it's a safe bet you will need to buy a ticket or plan on standing in the entry hallway. While some AIC members have been great about consistently buying tickets to watch Maestro, we've had occasional problems with improvisers bypassing the box office and seating themselves without obtaining a ticket.

While this may not seem like a huge ordeal, directors and I have had to struggle to make sure all paying audience members can find a seat. Often, this involves squeezing in a few extra chairs or a bench, which shouldn't be done (due to fire codes, we can only seat 49 people in the theater). The weekly game of finding available seats tends to delay that start of the show and irritates more than a few members of the paying audience.

I love Maestro as much as the next person not named Justin York, but we need to take extra care to make sure our paying audience members aren't uncomfortable and discouraged from coming back in the future. Please do your part and buy a ticket if you plan on taking a seat to watch Maestro in the future (or wait to see if seats are still open at 10:00 PM).
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Postby improvstitute » August 14th, 2007, 9:43 am

question...

I am not saying that this is my opinion, but is it time to consider moving Micetro to the downstairs theatre that seats closer to 100. Personally, I like performing inthe upstairs theatre because it is cozy, but I will take more audience members any day of the week over a cozier space.

What are other people's thoughts on this? I rarely get to play/see Micetro anymore, so it doesn't have much impact on me. Just thought I would put it out there.
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Postby vine311 » August 14th, 2007, 9:49 am

improvstitute wrote:question...

I am not saying that this is my opinion, but is it time to consider moving Micetro to the downstairs theatre that seats closer to 100. Personally, I like performing inthe upstairs theatre because it is cozy, but I will take more audience members any day of the week over a cozier space.

What are other people's thoughts on this? I rarely get to play/see Micetro anymore, so it doesn't have much impact on me. Just thought I would put it out there.


This subject was covered extensively in another thread that I don't have time to look up right now. The basic gist of it was that it was a good thing to turn some folks away each week. It creates a sense of urgency and lets people know we've got a popular thing going on here. When we do oversell, it's usually by about 10 people or so. If we were to move it downstairs, it would be a light house. Plus, the act of moving the audience from the upstairs to the downstairs would be disruptive and make the show start late. Also, the downstairs is not as improv friendly in the booth or the stage.
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Postby Roy Janik » August 14th, 2007, 9:52 am

improvstitute wrote:I am not saying that this is my opinion, but is it time to consider moving Micetro to the downstairs theatre that seats closer to 100. Personally, I like performing inthe upstairs theatre because it is cozy, but I will take more audience members any day of the week over a cozier space.


I personally wouldn't want to move downstairs unless we were consistently turning away about 20 people. As it is now, I think we're just barely overflowing, which means that we'd still have what, 40 seats free in the dowstairs?

I think for the time being, we should just get more hardcore about how many people we let into the upstairs for Maestro, and keep track of how many people we turn away.

Remember, if you're going to get a free improviser ticket, you

1) need to wait until 10pm, and
2) need to still get a ticket from the ticket booth.

We've probably been lax on this, since it hasn't been an issue, but it's the only way we can keep track of the body count.

Also, this is an awesome problem to have.
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Postby vine311 » August 14th, 2007, 10:12 am

Roy Janik wrote:Also, this is an awesome problem to have.


totally
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Postby Brian Boyko » August 14th, 2007, 10:49 am

You know, some drop clothes and tarps in the back 4 rows would turn a 100-seat light-house into a 60-seat "packed house"
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Postby bradisntclever » August 14th, 2007, 1:23 pm

Roy Janik wrote:As it is now, I think we're just barely overflowing.


Exactly. Over the last month and a half or so, we've been turning away maybe five or six people each week. It sucks for them, but I have seen some of those faces come back early the next week, which is exactly what we want.


Roy Janik wrote:Also, this is an awesome problem to have.


Agreed. Now, if we can only find a way to have this same problem in other shows that don't involve Maestro, GGG or a few other renowned groups.
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Postby bradisntclever » August 14th, 2007, 1:26 pm

vine311 wrote:This subject was covered extensively in another thread that I don't have time to look up right now. The basic gist of it was that it was a good thing to turn some folks away each week. It creates a sense of urgency and lets people know we've got a popular thing going on here. When we do oversell, it's usually by about 10 people or so. If we were to move it downstairs, it would be a light house. Plus, the act of moving the audience from the upstairs to the downstairs would be disruptive and make the show start late. Also, the downstairs is not as improv friendly in the booth or the stage.


That's a great summary of the other thread. If there's anything to add to it, it would be this: the downstairs theater isn't always an option, either. It's been dark more often than not lately, but the Hideout still rents it out and tends to let others use it for the occasional Saturday show. This is especially true when various festivals roll through town and snap up space in lots of theaters.
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Re: Watching Shows for Free

Postby York99 » August 16th, 2007, 11:59 am

bradisntclever wrote:
I love Maestro as much as the next person not named Justin York,


I don't know where this idea of my not liking Maestro comes from. I think it's great. I just don't participate because I have a show at the same time that I look forward to all week.

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Re: Watching Shows for Free

Postby acrouch » August 16th, 2007, 3:37 pm

York99 wrote:I don't know where this idea of my not liking Maestro comes from.


I never doubted you, Justin. Brad, stop doubting Justin.
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Re: Watching Shows for Free

Postby bradisntclever » August 16th, 2007, 4:00 pm

York99 wrote:I don't know where this idea of my not liking Maestro comes from. I think it's great. I just don't participate because I have a show at the same time that I look forward to all week.

I apologize if I gave off this impression. Rock on Mice!!


I'm just giving you a hard time for all the traffic direction over to the Maestro sub-forum. I know it's not due to any disliking of Maestro. I apologize if I gave you that impression.
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Re: Watching Shows for Free

Postby Wesley » August 16th, 2007, 7:51 pm

Johnstone Hater wrote:I don't know where this idea of my not liking Maestro comes from. I think it's great. I just don't participate...


Now you're just being passive-aggressive. What the hell did Maestro ever do to you?
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Re: Watching Shows for Free

Postby York99 » August 17th, 2007, 9:40 am

Wesley wrote:
Johnstone Hater wrote:I don't know where this idea of my not liking Maestro comes from. I think it's great. I just don't participate...


Now you're just being passive-aggressive. What the hell did Maestro ever do to you?


It's not so much what Maestro is, it's the name. My uncle was an orchestra conductor and he used to fondle me with his baton. It just brings back mostly unpleasant memories (but oh how he could control an organ!).
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Postby Wesley » August 19th, 2007, 12:50 am

We oversold again. We need to do something about that.

Turning people away is great. I like it, I love it. But sending them up to the theater when it is already full is NOT. We really need to cap it at 55 or whatever the limit is (minus two seats for directors).
As a side note, Christina, who did pay for a ticket like any other audience member had to give up her seat for this over-capacity. Granted, she got her money back, but even if the person is an improviser, if they wanted to see the show bad enough to follow procedure and pay, they shouldn't have to give up the seat. We shouldn't have oversold the seat to begin with.

We also started the show 15 minutes late, which is late even for us. Normally, the excuse for this is to give people more time to fill the house, but we sold out by 10:00. That left 50 people sitting there for 15 minutes for basically no reason.
I'm not complaining about why it happened or who should have prevented it in this case or whatever, but I am just saying that in the future, if the house is full, we should start the should just about immiedately (or at least on time). There is no reason to make them sit there and wait. It also cools the cast down a bit when they stop warming up about 10.
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Micetro

Postby annwilson » August 19th, 2007, 11:36 am

I admit that the house was over sat. I am at fault. But for the record Christina graciously offered to give up her seat. I would have never of asked her to do so Wes. Trust me, any paying improvisor who comes in early enough is treated like an audience member. If they feel obligated to help, it is appreciated, but ultimatley on his or her shoulders. I can understand when someone (an improvisor) would like to come to the theatre and be treated like a guest not a involuntary volunteer. Like you said I did refund her money and she still saw the show.

I do want to apologize for the late show, and the uproar of reassembeling seats. I understand that it is frusterating for a lot of folks. I know no one is "blaming" anyone. But the truth is I can only do better next time, and learn from my mistakes.

I agree with Roy in that we have to be on top of who bought tickets online, who has purchased a ticket, and who is entering the theatre. Which I'm gathering would fall on box, and ticket taker. Box should not oversell, and ticket taker would make sure that only ticket holders entered the theatre. Ticket taker is essential on a Saturday nights now.

Jessica also had a wonderful idea that people who purchase tickets online and are not at the theatre by 10 lose their seats. I don't know if that is already listed on the website where they can purchase tickets, but maybe it could be.
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