Program makes theater membership affordable

May 19, 2009

By Chantelle Lusebrink

As a young professional, it can be hard to savor the finer things in life when your budget is a shoestring, but Village Theatre can help you combat the lack of art in your life with a sweet deal. Curtain Call After Hours is a new program designed to get you into a seat at the theater’s Mainstage without breaking the bank. The program gives people ages 21-35 a season subscription for just $150, an $85 savings from normal rates.

“We hope to create an atmosphere for them and give deep discounts, and give them a place to get together before and after the show,” said Michelle Sanders, a spokeswoman for the theater. “We hope it is something people will look forward to during their workweek.”

There are many reasons Sanders said young professionals don’t purchase tickets — time, commitment and money are a few. Village Theatre officials are hoping with a discount, they’ll change their minds and be able to support the arts.

Like any other subscriber, Curtain Call members will get the theater’s newsletter service, lost ticket service, discounts on other seats, to bring a guest, and a host of other benefits, Sanders said.

But they’ll also be privy to some new ones, she added.

To put the program together, Village Theatre officials reached out to Room 38 owners and struck a deal for eats, drinks and social hours before and after each show.

Room 38’s owners created a special menu for the program, an extension of their happy hour, Sanders said.

You can grab artichoke dip for $5 and any of their entrées, like mini burgers with provolone cheese or fish tacos, for $6. Bottled beer is $2.50, well drinks are $3.50, wine by the glass is $4 and cosmopolitans, lemon drops or margaritas are $5.

As a Curtain Call subscriber, you’re limited to the dates to see a show, so you’ll have to block out those evenings.  But a plus may be that you’ll be with a bevy of other young professionals.

“We’re hoping it will turn into something people will come to over time, to run into familiar faces and be a good place for social networking, if that’s something they’re into,” Sanders said.

There may be opportunities at some events to mingle with the cast and crew of shows, she added, but that is something theater officials will discuss with cast members once the shows are in production.

Check out what a subscription would be like at the first Arts Spring Fling event at 6:30 p.m. May 27 at Teatro ZinZanni, 222 Mercer St., Seattle.

Eight local theater companies, including Village Theatre, will have sample performances and allow new theater patrons to view their season subscriptions for next year. Tickets are $15 in advance and $20 at the door. Go to www.brownpapertickets.com/event/64294.

On the Web

Go to www.villagetheatre.org and click on “Curtain Call After Hours” in the main menu or login to www.facebook.com and search “Curtain Call.”

Subscriber show dates

Sept. 30: “Chasing Nicolette”

Nov. 25: “Meet Me in St. Louis”

Feb. 3: “Lost in Yonkers”

March 31: “The Gypsy King”

May 26: “42nd Street”

Reach Reporter Chantelle Lusebrink at 392-6434, ext. 241, or clusebrink@isspress.com. Comment on this story at www.issaquahpress.com.

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