The Best Ways to See Broadway Shows and Not Pay a Million Dollars

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As you all know, I go to New York a lot. I lived there for a little bit once, and honestly thought I would end up living there permanently. This was before I came to Los Angeles and fell in love with it. All this to say - I love NYC and love traveling there every chance I get...if for nothing else than to catch up on this season's Broadway shows! Which is exactly what I did this time around. I honestly barely did anything else besides eat, drink, and watch shows. Best. Week. Ever. 

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There are several ways to get *cheaper* tickets to Broadway shows. There's a million apps, there's the TKTS booth in the middle of Times Square, you can play the lottery - but for *most* shows, the way to get the best price is to go DIRECTLY to the box office at the theatre at 10 am (or close-ish to that. Even noon is usually fine), and ask for a general rush ticket. There aren't any extra fees that the TKTS booth or apps make you pay for going through them. And they always have rush tickets for each show. If you are going to use an app, I've learned that Today Tix is the best one. You might get cheaper tickets through the online lottery, but by the time you find out if you've won or not, and you didn't win, it's too late to get rush tix for that evening, so you end up outta luck!

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I started my show-ventures with Once On this Island. LITTLE DID I KNOW that this would be one of my favorite shows EVAR. 

How I got my ticket: They actually don't do a general rush...they do an old school lottery process where you go to the theatre an hour and a half before show time and write your name on a piece of paper and then they draw from a bucket. I was lucky and went on a night where they had a lot of lottery tickets to give, so everyone who entered won! My ticket was $59. Some people scored $49 tickets. 

Review of the show: Kinda gave it away up there ^^ ...but lemme reiterate. THIS SHOW WAS AMAZING. I didn't know anything about the storyline or the music. All I knew was that everyone I know has seen it, and Lea Salonga is in it. (She's the singing voice for Jasmine and Mulan...yeah). The original Broadway run of this show was in 1990, and the 2018 revival won the Tony for Best Revival! The theatre is shaped in a circle around the stage, so they perform to every angle. The stage was covered in sand, and they had live animals! It was an extremely immersive experience - there was even wind blown throughout the audience! I think I cried more in this show than any show I've seen. And I basically cry at every show. I'll stop there, but if you get the chance, I URGE you to see this show. I bought merch. I never buy merch. 

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Next up - Mean Girls. This one was kind of a no-brainer to see.

How I got my ticket: So, on Wednesdays, the box office does a special where if you wear pink and get there early enough, you get $42 tickets. (Just so you know, I was planning on splurging on this show, because the cheapest tickets I could find beforehand were $130. So that's what I was expecting to pay). Box office opens at 10am. I wasn't willing to get there before 8am...so I got there at 8. Other people were way more invested, and got there at 5am with lawn chairs. #nothanks. So I missed out on those tix. But! since I was there, I asked the box office what the cheapest ticket was, and they said $79.50 with limited viewing. So I took it! The "limited viewing" was just the railing you see in the pic to the right. If I sat forward in my seat, I saw just fine!

Review of the show: Super fun! Big stage, big production numbers, lots of belting (sometimes seemed more like yelling), and all your favorite moments from the movie! Janis and Damian were hilarious and kind of acted as narrators in the show. I wore went on a Wednesday and wore pink, and it was awesome. Was it the best musical of all time? No. But, was it super fun and would I recommend it? 

**Bonus points to Mean Girls for these signs by the bathroom**

Wednesday was a double-header, so it was off to Carousel next!

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How I got my ticket: let me reiterate- go to the box office at 10 am and ask for "general rush" or just the cheapest ticket. I got a $40 ticket in the front center on the mezzanine. That's theatre-nerd speak for: A GREAT DEAL. 

Review of the show: I basically planned this trip around this show. Ever since they announced the cast, I knew I had to see it. Jessie Mueller, Lindsay Mendez, Renee Fleming...talk about a dream cast!! AND I got to see the show right before it won for Best Choreography (duh) and Best Featured Actress - Lindsay Mendez! So that was cool. But aside from all that, I love me some classic theatre. And again with the dancing in this show!!! I was in heaven. Def cried. 

 

 

Thursday, I decided, seemed like the perfect day for Hello, Dolly!

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How I got my ticket: I've said it before, and I'll say it again - go to the box office directly. I got a ticket in the mezzanine for $59. To see flippin' Bernadette Peters!!!

Review of the show: LOVE! Just utterly amazed at how Bernadette can still perform like that at age 70. 70!!! And also, Victor Garber played her opposite. Yooouuu knnooooowww who that is...Daddy Warbucks in Annie? Professor Callahan in Legally Blonde? So, that was awesome. But, the COSTUMES you guys!! INCREDIBLE. I'm so glad I got to see this show with this cast. My mom has loved Bernadette for as long as I can remember, so I kinda went for her, too. 

 

 

 

I took Friday off from shows, and hit up my last show of the trip on Saturday...SPONGEBOB!

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How I got my ticket: Box office. Early in the day. $50 front mezzanine. 

Review of the show: Even better than I thought it would be...and I kinda had high expectations! I grew up watching and loving Spongebob, so I was worried that they would just make it super cheesy. But it felt really true to how I think of Spongebob! They won the Tony for Best Scenic Design, and they totally deserved it. You feel like you're underwater when you walk in! (hence the blue pic you see ;). I was basically beaming and grinning like a little kid the whole show. If you like Spongebob - HIGHLY recommend!!!

 

 

And with that, my Broadway shows were over. *heavy sigh* Fave show - Once On This Island (praise hands)

Here's some pics from the rest of my trip!

Me in Time Square - Fish Tacos from Mother Burger (yum) - Freaking out about Bernadette - my FAVE meal in NYC, grilled octopus from Lexington Brass (YUM) - 49th Street stop - Tea & Sympathy, a restaurant recommended by Courtney of @colormecourtney, was a proper English tea. So cute!! - Central Park viewz - Mint Julep from Lexington Brass - every residential street in Manhattan - Kinship Coffee in Astoria - my bb Cassie! <3

Hope you enjoyed NYC through my eyes!

Love & Broadway

Jen