I’ve been getting A TON of questions and (usually supportive) comments from people asking me how in the world do I get to see Wicked the Musical so much!
Well because it’s my favorite thing, I decided to break it down for ya so that YOU TOO can see Wicked a potential 20 times (and counting), “because that’s what makes me so nice!”-Galinda.
However, you can use this for any Broadway/Touring/Regional theatre show, with a combination of the below formula I’ve had the opportunity to see shows like South Pacific, Beauty and the Beast, and Mary Poppins, to name a few…
First feasibility- how do you afford to see this show so often?? Prices for these tickets are INSANE!!!!?
Let me stop you right there- BECAUSE THERE IS A SHORTCUT FOR EVERYTHING! I usually get my tickets through the Wicked Lottery, but more on that later.
First you must know that I am a frugal person by nature. Part of the reason I can afford to buy all these tickets is because I literally spend my money on nothing else. In high school before I had a job I would save my money so that I would have a couple hundred to drop on not just one show, but perhaps two or three because that’s how much I loved it. You can buy new clothes anywhere and anytime, but seeing a particular cast of a particular show in a limited run can sometimes be a once in a lifetime thing.
Now I realize that while I’m living at home I do not have extra bills or rent to pay, and that I’m lucky enough to have a full-time job that I love and that not everyone is in this situation, so I’m not saying I think everyone should go see Wicked a billion times. This is just how I choose to spend my extra money. But I think the concept of being frugal and saving up for something awesome is a good lesson of patience that everyone can learn.
Alright so enough about my spending habits! Here are all the steps I use to get a good deal for a good show:
Lottery or Rush Tickets are discount tickets you can buy prior to a performance for that same day.
- Call the theatre or look up their website to see if they are offering this option. I have the SHN Orpheum Box Office phone number saved as a contact in my phone: (888) 746-1799. They can tell you what your options are for cheaper tickets based on theatre policy and availability. Ask them if they have a student discount! When I was in London I dragged my friends to Leicester Square to purchase tickets from a legit discount ticket booth for shows playing on the West End. We were able to get NINE orchestra seats in a row together for that night for £49!!!! Which I convinced my friends to buy them saying those seats would be $200 in America. #sold
- Try the Wicked Lottery. You go to the theatre 2 1/2 hours before the show starts to put your name in the raffle. They will then draw names a half hour later, 2 hours before the show. That means you need to get there at 11:30 for a 2 pm matinee, or 5:30 for an 8 pm performance. You will need with you a valid driver’s license or photo ID and $25 IN CASH. If they call your name you will have the opportunity to purchase two limited view orchestra seats for $25 apiece. This means that either you will need to have $50 dollars in cash to bring to the window or your friend gives you their $25. It helps if your group is an even number so everyone has a partner because you can only buy the tickets in pairs. SO for example, if you had 4 people in your group, only 2 of you would need your names to get drawn for all 4 of you to get $25 tickets. But everyone still puts their names in to increase the group’s chances. Make sense? Call me or the box office if you have questions hahaha.
- Rush Ticket Option. If you or your friend’s names are not called, which will probably happen 50% of the time, they will usually have a line you can get in to purchase tickets for $40 cash or $50 credit. DO IT BECAUSE IT’S SO WORTH IT. Even though these tickets are a little more expensive than the lottery ones, they are better seats and you can see way more AND they were probably upwards of $75-$100 online and they just didn’t sell out for that show.
- Buying tickets online. Okay, so I rarely buy tickets online unless it’s a show I haven’t seen before or if it’s a limited run and I don’t have time to go before the show to get rush tickets. The only reason why I buy tickets online is to ensure that I WILL see that show! You can usually buy them from ticketmaster.com but I usually just go through the shnsf.com website for San Francisco shows. It helps if you buy them way in advance because closer to the show they might raise the price. It also helps to be “involved” in social media. What I mean by that is if you like SHN’s Facebook page or follow a certain touring musical’s official Instagram, a lot of times they will announce pre-sale tickets exclusively for Facebook, Instagram, Twitter fans. That’s how I got my tickets to see Idina Menzel on tour in Concord before they sold out because she posted a pre-sale promo code on her Facebook page.
Alright so did that answer your questions about how I cheat the system?? Let me know!
If you wind up getting rush tickets that means you probably have 1-2 hours to kill before the show! There is a Subway, Starbucks and Burger King across the street from the Orpheum Theatre, but I usually walk a couple blocks down to the Westfield Mall because they have a HUGE food court plus like 6 floors of stores on stores on stores! If you go here you need to start walking back by 7:30 because it’s like a 10ish minute walk and the show starts at 8! (Same thing applies to 2 pm matinees, but I don’t want to do the math for you…okay it wasn’t actually hard, you need to start walking back by 1:30…)
Amanda’s Wicked Survival Bag
Okay no, I don’t have an actual bag designated just for Wicked, but these are the things I ALWAYS bring with me and am sad if I don’t.
- Gum/mints because if I get too excited to eat I want nice breath
- Tylenol and a water bottle because I WILL ALWAYS get a headache from a combination of excitement and dehydration
- A portable phone charger/wall charger and plug
- Glasses so if I’m sitting far away I can see the actors better
- SHARPIE to get autographs after!
Getting to meet the Actors at the Stage Door
K, so this might be my fav part when my fangirl side goes CRAZY. I go to the Stage Door after every show because the actors come out and sign autographs and take pictures with the fans!!! You can ask the security/ushers at the theatre where exactly the Stage Door that the actors come out to sign autographs is located if you’re at a theatre you’ve never been before. If you’ve never been there before you would need to figure this out before the show because if you’re running around after curtain call you might miss some of your favorites! I try to leave as soon as the whole cast takes their final bow so I’m not rude and leaving without giving them their well-deserved applause, but then you have to fight the crowd leaving and sometimes you have to squeeze past peeps and get really close to some grannies but if it helps you get to the Stage Door before other people then THAT MAKES YOU THE WINNER!
In the case of Wicked, the actress who plays Elphaba is literally painted green on her face, neck, and hands for the role, so unless there are headshots in the playbill of each actor you might have to google the actress beforehand to see what she actually looks like IRL. You can also tell who she is because she will have her nails painted green or black and she will probably have some green makeup in her hairline, in case my screaming “THERE’S ELPHABA!!!” doesn’t give it away…
I’ve had the pleasure of meeting a TON of amazing actresses who have played Elphaba and Glinda, some of them have been on Broadway and some of them I’ve found on YouTube a year or so prior and have dreamed about seeing them perform. And literally ALL of them are so incredibly kind and down to earth and are genuinely grateful for you coming to see the show.
Well, I think that’s about it. Do you have any other questions?? Text me or Facebook me or comment on this post if you do! I really feel so lucky to have been able to see this incredible show as many times as I have. I’ve met some amazing people over the years, both actors and fans alike that have become an integral part of my life.
Wicked has taught me so much, it’s shown me that it’s okay to be different, to stay true to who you are, and that “people come into our lives for a reason, bringing something we must learn. And we are led to those who help us must to grow if we let them, and we help them in return”.
Because of my experience seeing Wicked, I have been changed For Good.
(And as a PSA for all as well as to quell my insanity- FOR THE LOVE OF FIYERO, WATCH THE WIZARD OF OZ IF YOU HAVE NEVER SEEN IT. When I hear people at the show saying they’ve never seen the movie I literally want to yell “THEN WHY ARE YOU EVEN HERE?” That is all.)