Not everyone should play poker.

Anyone that
has played a lot of poker knows that if you get a player that sits down at the
table that doesn’t know how to play very well, it can really affect your game.

Oh, you’d
think you could just take all of their money pretty easily, but it’s not that

Bad players
make stupid bets not based on odds, drive up the pots, read the cards wrong,
and play on emotion.  And they can even win a big pot every once in awhile
making them think they know how to play.

And sometimes,
they can draw you in to playing their style of the game.

And when they
pull you in, you end up making bad bets and the next thing you know, you’re
heading for the buffet, as they are buying tickets to the latest Cirque show
with your money.

Or they just
mess up the game for everyone else that’s trying to play.

This happens
all too often in the theater, a business where sometimes a big checkbook is all
you need.  Most recently, I watched a high profile show whose fate had
been sealed some time ago start doing random media buys, including full page
ads in papers, etc.  And then this week, they sent out an offer for free
tickets to every single one of their performances . . . to a list of people
that usually paid for tickets (guess which list is going to be hard to retrain
that they have to pay for theater now – thanks for ruining that hand for the
rest of the players, guys!)

And after all
that . . . this week, they announced their closing. 

When you see
big ads, and lots of questionable media, it’s easy to start to think you need
to do the same thing.  But don’t get sucked in, just because someone
raises the bet.

Good poker
players sit back behind sunglasses and play the numbers, calculating pot odds,
determining when to raise and when to fold based on data first and then gut,
while watching others flail around.

Oh, and knowing when to fold and
close a show and limit your losses to your investors is one of the hardest
lessons to learn, but one of 
the most important.

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Ken created one of the first Broadway podcasts, recording over 250 episodes over 7 years. It features interviews with A-listers in the theater about how they “made it”, including 2 Pulitzer Prize Winners, 7 Academy Award Winners and 76 Tony Award winners. Notable guests include Pasek & Paul, Kenny Leon, Lynn Ahrens and more.