The only upside to today’s Super Premium Broadway ticket prices.

Warning:  If you hate how much Broadway tickets cost, you are going to hate this post.

In fact, I kind of hate it myself.

See, it all started with Hamilton.

Because of the spectacular demand for tickets, prices skyrocketed on the secondary market.  And, in a duel with the brokers that A. Ham himself would have been proud of, the Producers of Hamilton raised their prices, in an effort to let the money that the public was willing to spend, go to the artists and investors in the show itself.

And the $500 ticket was born.

Then comes Dear Evan Hansen, another big hit in a small theater, which was also able to raise their premium prices up to $499.

And just a couple of weeks ago, the NY Times broke a story about Hello, Dolly! charging $998 per ticket for front row seats.

Whew.  Pretty insane, right?

Well, there is an upside to all this . . . ready for it?

The $150, full price ticket, now looks cheap.

It used to be that a $150 ticket looked super expensive, and we discounted the eff out of it.  Now?  Well, maybe, just maybe, a consumer who has paid $500 to see some of the other big hits, and has done so without blinking an eye, won’t balk at paying “regular full price” for a show that hasn’t yet hit mega-hit status.

It’s simple contrast pricing . . . whenever anything is presented to a consumer at a super high price, whatever price comes next looks like a bargain, even if it’s still a high price . . . just as long as it’s less than the first price!

For example:

A Mercedes costs $50k.

Now consider it this way:

A Ferrari costs $100k.  A Mercedes costs $50k.

All of a sudden, that Mercedes doesn’t look so expensive!

This unintentional phenomenon might just be what the shows in the middle of the market need to increase their chances at recoupment.

Because now, hate it or not, $150 looks like a deal-and-a-half.


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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.