Why some brokers get a bad name.

Whenever something is scarce and has value, there will always be a way for resellers to profit from it.  Diamonds, Elvis Presley Autographed Toilet Seats, and yes, theater tickets.

That preface is me admitting that ticket brokers, who traffic in tickets in the secondary market (e.g. tickets which have already been purchased through Ticketmaster or Telecharge and are now being resold), will always exist in our world.

And, frankly, there is a place for them.  They fill the need for a certain type of consumer who needs a certain thing (tickets to Hugh Jackman for tomorrow night, let’s say), needs it now (the show is tomorrow night), and will pay anything for them (how’s about $421.80/ticket).

So I’m not anti-broker.

I’m just anti Bad Broker.

A dear friend of mine suffered at the hands of a BB recently that had me wanting to call the BBB.  She had a hankering to take a client to see Book of Mormon real bad like, so she googled and found one of the many sites hawking BoM tickets in the secondary market.  She clicked away, and then next thing you know, she had purchased two crappy seats for $200+ each.

She made her way to the box office only to find that her tickets weren’t there.  And, tick-tock, there was only another 15 minutes to curtain.  In the fine print, she found out that her tickets were supposed to be picked up at some shady office in midtown.  She sprinted to the “drop” and found . . . her tickets weren’t there either.

“Oh, sorry.  We never got these tickets,” the BB said.

“But it says that I’m confirmed.”

“Yeah, sorry.”

“But . . . “

“We didn’t get the tickets. What can I say, lady?”

My friend, and her client, exhausted and frustrated by the experience altogether . . . skipped the theater and just went to dinner instead.

When I heard the story I knew that she had fallen prey to one of the many not-so-scrupulous brokers who have taken advantage of technology to speculate on tickets . . . and advertise something they try to get their hands on AFTER they sell it.

And often times, the bad BBs fail.

And the theater as a whole, suffers.

Related Posts


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.