How to get tickets for NYC Shakespeare in the Park
June 11, 2010 4:25 PM   Subscribe

Hi all! NYT covered Shakespeare In The Park 2010 which looks great: It mentions tickets are handed out for free from 1pm on show day. Anyone have experience with how long the queues are / when I should be there to stand a chance? Is 10am early enough? Sadly I'm only here Sat/Sun and we'd probably be angling for Sun. thanks!
posted by to Media & Arts (10 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
I see dozens people already queued up in the park before 6 a.m. during the week, so that means they've got a full morning of doing nothing but standing/sitting/lying down on line.
posted by computech_apolloniajames at 4:33 PM on June 11, 2010

Prepar to either sleep overnight or get there before dawn.
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 4:35 PM on June 11, 2010

Response by poster: Insane ok with no local data plan on my phone I might just give this a miss - thanks guys!
posted by at 4:37 PM on June 11, 2010

Don't forget about the daily virtual lottery! Chances are slim, but someone has to win.
posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 4:56 PM on June 11, 2010

I went once on a weekend at 8am. We just missed getting tickets. 6 should be safe. You do not have to spend the night. That's ridiculous.
posted by millipede at 4:58 PM on June 11, 2010

Hire a substitute. Scalp 'em.
posted by grobstein at 5:06 PM on June 11, 2010

How early you have to get there depends on the reviews/buzz about the particular show and the weather. Last year we walked right up to the booth and got tickets for Twelfth Night on a weekday afternoon when it was pouring rain (it cleared up nicely for the show). Another year we got there at around 9am on a Saturday and weren't even close. I've heard there have been productions that were so popular people would wait overnight for tickets, but I think that's pretty unusual.
posted by boltman at 5:16 PM on June 11, 2010

Best answer: With Al Pacino in it, I would definitely get there before 6 unless the weather predicts rain all day.
posted by peanut_mcgillicuty at 8:30 PM on June 11, 2010

I went once at 8:30am on a weekday, just missed getting tickets. (I just wanted to watch a Brecht play while everyone wanted to see Meryl Streep!)

They're pretty strict about substitutions or people taking your place, so bring a blanket, a book, a deck of cards, and a willingness to make conversation, and you'll be fine. Also, you can order from the line fron a deli nearby, which I did, and it's kind of fun ("French toast, please -- I'm in the red shirt near the really large tree!"). I think the deli is called Andy's Deli.


mini-rant, not to you necessarily, but partially in response to grobstein:

Please, please, please, PLEASE, don't buy scalped tickets, or enable scalping for this event in any way. The Public Theater (which is a non-profit), as well as the numerous grants/sponsors behind this production, is doing an amazing service to the city by having a top-notch production be free to the public. Part of the point of this free service is that anyone can watch this, as long as you're willing in line. No $47.50 general admission tickets here.

If you buy tickets on Craigslist, you're creating and enabling a market that reduces this wonderful event back to a horrid state that's exactly that which its creators were working against: 'if you've got money, then you can skip the line; if you don't, then you can get up early and wait in line like everyone else.' When I missed seeing Mother Courage a few years ago, I went online later and saw tickets on Craigslist going for $100 each. It's because of people who buy these tickets that the donors, grants, arts organizations, and so on don't reach their intended purpose. If you want to watch another performance for money, go do so, please, that's wonderful, those actors and the production house would love your presence. Just don't do it for one of the most beloved summer events in the city that strives to be an egalitarian, free, for-the-public experience.
posted by suedehead at 9:47 PM on June 11, 2010 [5 favorites]

There's a lottery online too, or at least there was last summer.
posted by dd42 at 8:26 AM on June 12, 2010

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