Affordable Theater In The D.C. Region

Affordable Theater In The D.C. Region

Despite the many types of theater and a range of ticket prices, many see a night out at the theater as a luxury. We explore how theaters are working to change that perception.

Local theaters are on a mission: make live performances of classic plays and experimental new works accessible to people of all income levels. But the local theater community often finds itself battling the notion that seeing a show on stage is a luxury or a pursuit reserved for the moneyed. So they're experimenting with new pricing models, including “pay what you can” evenings at many theaters. We explore the affordability of theater in our region.

Guests

Pete Miller

Board Member, Woolly Mammoth Theater

Bob Mondello

Arts critic, NPR

Rachel Grossman

Ring Leader, Dog & Pony DC

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Where To Find Discount Theater Tickets In The Washington Area

It's not hard to find a theater in our region that offers some sort of discounted pricing, whether regularly low-priced tickets, "pay what you can" evenings or free previews. Most theaters also offer markdowns on the single-ticket price if you buy a subscription package to a handful of performances for the season. And it's always worth asking if a venue has a student, military, veteran or senior discount.

Taffety Punk and Flying-V Theatre are committed to keeping ticket prices low, with prices typically ranging from $10 to $25. General admission is $20 at the Anacostia Playhouse.

For those who prefer "pay what you can" tickets, Forum Theatre in Silver Spring, Md., has adopted the pricing model for every show.

Woolly Mammoth Theatre Company has "pay what you can" previews as well as a flex pass. It's one price for six admissions to be used whenever you want.

WSC-Avant Bard in Arlington, Va., holds a "pay what you can" evening for each performance.

There are several discounted viewing options at The Shakespeare Theatre Company, including $18 tickets for those 35 years and under, cheaper preview evening tickets and discounted tickets for less desirable seats.

Folger Theater at the Shakespeares Library boasts "pay what you can" evenings and College Nights, where a student ID will get you a $15 ticket.

The Kennedy Center's Millenium Stage hosts at least one performance nightly, starting at 6 p.m. every day of the week. The best part? The events are always free.

Round House Theatre in Bethesda, Md., has discount tickets for those under 30 years old and a two-for-one ticket special going on now.

The under-30 crowd can also find reduced-price tickets at Studio Theatre and, when available, $30 rush tickets for shows not yet sold out.

In Arlington, Signature Theatre offers four-ticket family packages and $22 tickets on Tuesdays.

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