Tag Archives: star seat

Ticket tips & info for ‘A Christmas Story, the Musical’

Tickets sales are brisk for A Christmas Story, the Musical, running Nov. 15 through Dec. 8, so here’s a refresher on Near West Theatre’s ticketing system: how to get a seat, what happens if there’s a sellout, what to do if you buy a ticket and then can’t come, and other helpful tidbits.

There are 220 seats for each of the 13 performances. As of the end of the business day on Thursday, Nov. 14, a day before opening weekend, it was clear that you shouldn’t wait till the last minute. For more than half the shows, at least two-thirds of the seats were already gone. Our leading sellers at that moment, in order,  were Fri., Nov. 29 (180 tickets sold); Sun., Dec. 8 (161), Sun., Nov. 17 (157); Sat., Nov. 23 (155); Sat., Dec. 7 (150); Sat., Nov. 30 (147) and Fri., Nov. 15 (142), with several other dates close behind. [UPDATE, Nov. 24, 2013 — All performances are now sold out.]

Lots of people want tickets, as these did for Children of Eden (2012). Call if you're not coming! Photo by Terry Schordock

Lots of people want tickets, as these did for Children of Eden (2012). Call if you’re not coming! Photo by Terry Schordock

Advance sales and walk-ins will only heat up further with the show now being listed in every “Friday!” section of The Plain Dealer and news coverage increasing. So far we’ve seen stories in the The Plain Dealer,  Cleveland.com and FreshWaterCleveland.com. A “Sound of Applause” segment is due Nov. 21 on 90.3 FM, and a “Reel Cleveland” feature is coming in a couple of weeks on Time Warner TV20.

And now, the tips:

Basic ticket info. You can buy: (1) online anytime; (2) by phone, 216-961-6391, weekdays 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.; (3) in person during those same hours at our business office in Cleveland’s Gordon Square Arts District, 6516 Detroit Ave., Suite 9; or (4) — if you want to take your chances — at the theater ticket table, 3606 Bridge Ave. in Cleveland’s Ohio City neighborhood, starting one hour before show time.  Prices are $20 for a reserved Star Seat (described below), $10 for adult general admission, and $8 for child general admission (12 years of age and younger). Tickets purchased in advance will be waiting for you at the theater ticket table. You can arrive up to one hour before show time, and please arrive no later than 10 minutes before show time so that everyone can get situated for an on-time start. If you arrive 30 minutes or more before the show starts, you’ll line up with all other ticket holders in order of your arrival at the theater. When the house opens, 30 minutes before show time, general-admission ticket holders are free to choose any seat that is not marked as reserved. For forms of payment and other information, click here.

How to find out if tickets are still available. [UPDATE, Nov. 24, 2013 — All performances are now sold out.] Calling 216-961-6391 during the designated hours above, or going online and trying to buy tickets, are two ways to know if seats are still available for the show you want to see. Whenever possible, we also use Facebook and Twitter (@NearWestTheatre) to let the world know when there’s a sellout.

What happens if there’s a sellout. If a show is sold out (see above about how to find out), you can come to the theater, 3606 Bridge Ave., as early as one hour before show time, speak to the people at the ticket table and get on a waiting list to see if any tickets become available. The only way we can release seats that have already been reserved is if the people who bought them tell us they aren’t coming and give us permission to re-sell their tickets. So…ACSTMproductionimage

If you can’t come, please tell us! We can’t offer you a refund, but with you’re permission we’ll free up the seats you won’t be using and sell them to patrons who can come to the show. You can let us know by calling 216-961-6391 weekdays, 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.; sending an e-mail to Kelcie Dugger (kdugger at nearwesttheatre.org); telling us in person at the theater as early as one hour before any show; or calling 440-665-1796 after 4 p.m. weekdays or anytime on the weekend.

What’s a Star Seat? Your $20 ticket is first and foremost a wonderful way to support Near West Theatre’s art and mission and help keep our general prices affordable. Thank you! It also gets you a reserved seat of your choice, a free item at our gift shop (window cling, button, or wrist band), a gift shop discount and a free soft drink at our concession stand. To choose your seating location, just call 216-961-6391 between 11 a.m. and 4 p.m. on any weekday before the performance you’re attending and tell us whether you want to sit in a front, middle or back row, and to the left, center or right as you face the stage. On the night of the show, you’ll find your chair marked with your name (or the name of the party you’re with).

See you at the theater! — Hans Holznagel


Supporters of this production of A Christmas Story, the Musical, include the City of Cleveland, Department of Community Development, and a presenting sponsor, Hinkley Lighting. Near West Theatre is grateful for ongoing programmatic support from the Ohio Arts CouncilCuyahoga Arts and Culture, and Greater Cleveland Community Shares.


A Christmas Story, the Musical

Musical by Joseph Robinette, Benj Pasek and Justin Paul,

 based upon A Christmas Story © 1983 Turner Entertainment Co., distributed by Warner Bros., written by Jean Shepherd, Leigh Brown and Bob Clark, and on the book In God We Trust: All Others Pay Cash by Jean Shepherd.

A Christmas Story, the Musical, is produced by special arrangement with THE DRAMATIC PUBLISHING COMPANY, INC., of Woodstock, Illinois. Produced with permission of Warner Bros. Theatre Ventures, Inc.


Sign up to volunteer!

Volunteering at a show is great way to support and experience Near West Theatre’s community-building mission. Now we need people of all ages — including you — for May performances of Jacques Brel is Alive and Well and Living in Paris. There are many ways to help: Join the team that staffs the concession stand, gift shop or ticket table. Greet patrons and hand out playbills. Serve as a house manager or assistant. Bake a batch of cookies or brownies. Pop popcorn. Please consider volunteering for one or more of these performances.  Arrival time is 6 p.m. (or 1:30 on Sundays):

Sue Stewart, our friendly Volunteer Coordinator (shown here at the center of box-office action during the 2012 production of Rent) will sign you up to help in one of many ways.

Sue Stewart, our friendly Volunteer Coordinator (shown here at the center of box-office action during the 2010 production of Rent), will sign you up to help in one of many ways.

  • Friday, May 3
  • Saturday, May 4
  • Thursday, May 9
  • Friday, May 10
  • Saturday, May 11
  • Sunday, May 12
  • Friday, May 17
  • Saturday, May 18
  • Sunday, May 19

Besides the fun and satisfaction of volunteering, you’ll also experience the excitement of show time at the theater – and you can see the show for free (unless it’s sold out!). Please sign up by contacting Volunteer Coordinator Sue Stewart, susanstewart11@aol.com, 216-861-0318.

Running a spotlight (as Noah Utterback did for Children of Eden in 2012) is one of many tasks handled by our volunteer crew.

Running a spotlight (as Noah Utterback did for Children of Eden in 2012) is one of many tasks handled by our volunteer crew.

Crew needed, too. Volunteer backstage and balcony crew members are needed from April 21 through May 19, for the last two weeks of Brel rehearsals and the run of the show. It’s fun, active and team-oriented. To volunteer for the crew, contact Kelcie Dugger, kdugger@nearwesttheatre.org, 216-961-9750.

Don’t forget our new Star Seats! Forty years ago this month, Jacques Brel opened in the State Theatre lobby and helped save Cleveland’s Playhouse Square. Now Near West Theatre revives this iconic musical, not with four performers on cabaret stools but with a diverse castBREL poster 2013 of 32 community actors! Don’t miss these high-energy, dramatic songs and stories of passion, personal struggle and social critique. Consider supporting our art and mission – and ensuring affordable community prices – by enjoying a $20 reserved Star Seat with additional benefits. Our regular community ticket prices are also available, of course: $8 for adults, $6 for children 12 and under (mature themes; parental discretion advised), general admission.  Order online; call 216-961-6391 between 11 a.m. and 4 p.m. weekdays; or visit our business office, 6516 Detroit Ave., Suite 9, during those same hours. Any remaining tickets will be sold at the performance site, 3606 Bridge Ave., starting an hour before show time.

Crew members from a couple years back take a break by concessions: (l. to r.) Jason Dugger, Alicia Cleveland, Emily Suma, Rod Cardwell, Leland Pestak, Hayden Neidhardt, Mo Eutazia, Carter Smith.

Crew members from a couple years back take a break by concessions: (l. to r.) Jason Dugger, Alicia Cleveland, Emily Suma, Rod Cardwell, Leland Pestak, Hayden Neidhardt, Mo Eutasia, Carter Smith.

2 plays in a day? What a week!

It’s a rare week at Near West Theatre, with two shows in production. The 9- to 13-year-olds in our summer workshop, KLAMOR, will publicly share their original piece, Angels and Demons, on Thursday evening and Saturday and Sunday afternoons, while our summer youth theatre production of Hairspray, the Broadway Musical (ages 13 to 21), continues Friday and Saturday nights. They’re on different stages, but we’ve made sure they’re never performing at the same hour.

The Hairspray buzz is great after one sellout and one near-capacity crowd on opening weekend, and air conditioning that really worked. But do come support our 24 hard-working KLAMOR kids, too — many of them from our immediate neighborhood and all of them potential participants in future productions.

In fact, may we suggest an afternoon and evening of Near West Theatre fun on Saturday, July 28 — the one time in recent memory we’ve offered two plays in a day? Park free in the St. Patrick’s lot at West 38th Street and Bridge Avenue. Hit Angels and Demons at 3 p.m. at West Side United Church of Christ, 3800 Bridge.  Linger afterwards and congratulate our young actors and faculty. Then, before the 7:30 p.m. performance of Hairspray at our regular 3606 Bridge performance space, enjoy the sights of Ohio City or bop up to the Gordon Square Arts District, where our new theater will eventually be. Eat at one or more of the establishments that support us with a current playbill ad and thank them for it: Le Petit Triangle,  Luxe, Momocho, Sweet Moses, Happy Dog, Great Lakes Brewing Company and Flying Fig — or at one of several others that have supported us this season (see a list in this newsletter).

Tickets for both productions are available online or by calling 216-961-6391 between 11 a.m. and 4 p.m. weekdays.  Support Near West by trying our new Star Seatbenefits at $20; or enjoy general admission at $8 for adults, $6 for children 12 and under. Advance purchases are recommended, but any remaining tickets are sold at the door for each performance starting one hour before curtain time.

KLAMOR & West Side UCC, July 18, 2012

The KLAMOR cast and staff of Angels and Demons during a July 18 break near West Side United Church of Christ (seen in background), where the show will be performed July 26, 28 and 29. Photo by Hans Holznagel.

Star Seats: new perks

Until now, the satisfaction of supporting Near West Theatre — plus a free beverage — is what you got for purchasing a $20 Star Seat.  Now it gets you a little something more.  Our new-and-improved Star Seat makes its debut with Hairspray, the Broadway Musical.

Buy a Star Seat in advance and you can:

  1. Get a reserved seat, and choose where it will be;
  2. Choose a free NWT wristband, button or window cling;
  3. Get a 15% discount on a gift shop purchase; and…
  4. Still get that free beverage!

We hope sitting where you want without lining up early and waiting for the house to open will be an attractive reason to consider a Star Seat. Just arrive 10 minutes before curtain and your reserved seat will be marked and waiting! And we’re excited about our three new small merchandise items: rubber Near West Theatre wristbands,  pin-on buttons with our logo, and clear vinyl logos that cling to your car window. The wristbands and buttons are brand new. The window clings, popular a few years ago with our old logo, are finally making a return appearance with our new street-sign logo. A Star Seat lets you choose one of the three.

But in the end, these are just tokens of our thanks. Satisfaction is still the biggest benefit.  By supporting our work with the purchase of a Star Seat, or a package of six for $100, you help keep great art affordable by keeping our regular community ticket prices low ($8 for adults, $6 for children). And you enable ordinary people from all walks of life to take part in the extraordinary productions that result from our free, professionally led theater process.

For details on Star Seats or to make a purchase, click here or call 216-961-6391 weekdays between 11 a.m. and 4 p.m.

Sitting close to the action, like these 2011 Oliver! audience members? That’s Near West Theatre. Reserving that favorite seat in advance? That’s a Star Seat! Photo by Terry Schordock.