Tuesday, 11 June 2013

You've Got To Pick A Pocket Or Two ....

The theatrical TeenTwin2 is appearing in her school's production of "Oliver" in a couple of weeks time and, of course, the rest of the family want to go and cheer her on. Not literally obviously, I believe that is frowned on in The Theatre.

And the production IS in a proper theatre. Not for The Academy a school hall or gym (of which they have plenty), but in the city's own theatre, a listed heritage building designed by Frank Matcham and built in 1894. It is a lovely theatre, it must be said, and staging the production there WILL add to the excitement, the glamour and the thrill of performing for every member of the cast.

Less thrilling is the ticket price the assembled parents of the cast have to pay to see their budding thespians walk the theatre stage.

Now, I don't know who is responsible for the ticket pricing structure, the school or the theatre or a combination of them both and decided after a meeting in a den. But I do know that there is someone, somewhere who deserves to be centre-stage singing: "You've got to pick a pocket or two...." And it isn't a 17 year old Fagin.

Last night I paid £80, give or take a couple of pence, for six tickets, four of which were at concessionary prices. I bought them on-line which was a good job because I was huffing, puffing and using highly theatrical language of my own while filling in the card details and that might not have gone down too well in the box office. 

Shall I say that again? Eighty. English. Pounds. EIGHTY effing QUID. For a school production; our sole interest in which is watching TeenTwin2 play a strumpet and to be honest, I can watch her do that at home for free. *Rolls eyes*

There are, in the interests of fairness, cheaper tickets available. For example if one was happy with a bench and an oxygen mask, you could sit in the Gods for £8 but I suffer from vertigo and the expensive peculiarity of wanting to see the stage.

The theatre has 499 seats and not all, I'll wager, get filled on a regular basis for touring productions, but the school production features if not a cast of thousands, a fair number of schoolchildren all with parents, siblings and grandparents eager to watch their young ones and the tickets are (if the online seat booking site is to be believed) selling like hot cakes. Very expensive hotcakes, with jam on.

I feel co-erced into paying what I consider to be unrealistic ticket prices for a school production but I have paid it, though certainly not gladly. I suspect there will be other parents who won't be able to do the same having been simply priced out of enjoying their child's theatrical debut. 

That makes me sad, but frankly not as sad as paying EIGHTY effing QUID ....

And breathe .....

 Who will buy our tickets .....the cast of Oliver promoting the show in our local shopping centre.


  1. That is ridiculous. I think when a child is in a production like this, they should be able to let at least 1 parent in free. So many people won't be able to afford that therefore won't get to see their child perform. Very unfair.

  2. Oh my goodness, that's expensive!
    A terrible shame that some parents will be priced out.

  3. Bloody hell!!! £80!! I had to pay a fair bit to see Pickle in her first Ballet production in a real theatre. Much smaller than yours. Thankfully only bi annual, so I can't start saving for next year. Presumably it's an overhead cost thing with proper lighting and the need to employ someone to do it. What happened to a hap hazard play in the school hall?

  4. Dont. My kids are desperate to see Stomp. The ticket prices are crippling and if that wasnt robbery enough you then have an "admin fee" PER ticket of about £4.

    It is a scandal.

  5. Gosh, that is pricey. Some parents won't be able to afford that!

  6. That is ridiculous!! Far too expensive!!


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