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To think that school plays bring out selfish behaviour in some parents?

(79 Posts)
BaconFrazzles Tue 17-Dec-13 12:42:42

This morning DH and I went to our youngest child's school xmas play. The school our DC go to doesn't charge for tickets, but you have to book tickets as due to space restrictions, and for fairness, there is a limit of 3 seats per child. You are given confirmation of your tickets but there is no policing of the tickets at the door, and every year some families seem to bring loads of people with them, and take no notice of the ticket rules.

This then means that many parents that have stuck to the rules end up with no seats, and standing at the back or crammed at the side of the hall, with a rubbish view. The ones that break the rules are generally there first of all and reserve rows of seats, and get all the front row seats for their grans/aunties/next door neighbours.

This morning at DS's play, I saw that one family had taken up a total of 12 seats: the mum, the dad, both sets of grandparents, the mum's auntie, the mum's 3 cousins, and the family's next door neighbour and her daughter! Another family had a good 6 or 7 seats reserved in the front row.

I know it's only a school play and not that important in the grand scheme of things, but I just think it's so bloody selfish. Everyone wants to see their child perform, and it's unfair that some are blatantly breaking rules, meaning that others don't get to see much of their child. I also noticed today that many people in the front few rows kept standing up to take photos and video their children/grandchildren, meaning that those of us stuck in the rows behind got no view at all for much of the show.

SunshinemMum Tue 17-Dec-13 12:45:11

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

ceebie Tue 17-Dec-13 12:45:30

Don't be so grumpy. It's only selfish if other families didn't get to see the play at all. Next time turn up earlier to get better seats. It's lovely that wider families are interested in supporting their nieces / nephews / grandchildren - not all are.

RodneyTheChristmasElf Tue 17-Dec-13 12:45:36


My pet hate is selfish gits who stand up to get a better view blocking the view for everyone else sat behind them.

PoppySeed2014 Tue 17-Dec-13 12:45:48

My dc's play was doors open at 9.45am this morning. I arrived at 9.44 and the hall was full. So I sat at the back and couldn't see a bloody thing.

ceebie Tue 17-Dec-13 12:46:44

PS Further to my post, just to noted that, No, I don't take more than my allocated seats - I'm a stickler for following rules. However I don't feel grumpy towards others.

HopAlongOnItsOnlyChristmas Tue 17-Dec-13 12:46:58

I'd raise it with the HT, wouldn't be very difficult for them to just allocate people paper tickets and then no ticket = no entry. It's not fair and probably a fire hazard to have people just crammed in willy nilly while little special snowflake's great aunt twice removed and her 3 neighbours take up all the seats.

BaconFrazzles Tue 17-Dec-13 12:47:16

Lots of parents barely got to see the play though, ceebie. The hall isn't big, and they were crammed at the back like sardines, standing up. I would imagine many only got the view of the back of the person's head that was stood in front of them.

PoppySeed2014 Tue 17-Dec-13 12:48:14

Also, the message and meaning of Christmas seemed to be about Father Christmas and presents. And food. And presents. Etc. actually found it quite depressing. Dd's class were Australian children celebrating Christmas (ie food and presents). Not that I could see any more than the top of her head. sigh

lottieandmia Tue 17-Dec-13 12:48:20

YANBU - that isn't fair. Everyone should have an equal chance. What happened to me one year was that I ended up paying £15 for tickets and then found out that some people at the performance had refused to pay and had been allowed in anyway. That didn't seem fair at all.

If seating is restricted then tickets should also be restricted to a number per family.

kungfupannda Tue 17-Dec-13 12:49:31

I've just had a mini rant on another thread.

DS1's 1st ever nativity play, we had this. They have a strict 2 tickets per family rule for the evening performance, but you can bring siblings if they sit on your knee.

There were about 20 of us who couldn't get away from work in time to queue for seats, and we finished up standing in the back corner, where you could barely see the stage, because people had put their toddlers on a third seat, so there weren't enough.

To add insult to injury, a woman near us kept standing up and leaping around with her camera until we had to ask her to sit down. We could not see a bloody thing.

We probably should have collared a teacher and asked for an announcement that children needed to sit on knees, but it was so close to the performance starting and all the seats would have been dotted throughout the hall, so it would have caused utter carnage for everyone.

PoppySeed2014 Tue 17-Dec-13 12:49:36

And yanbu op. Plenty of ticket dodgers there this morning too. So parents who couldn't turn up an hour early were hemmed in at the back.

BaconFrazzles Tue 17-Dec-13 12:52:06

lottieandmia that's awful! I hope you complained to the school.

We were lucky that we did manage to get seats this morning, and we did get several sightings of DS. However, I did feel for those standing at the back. It's not very relaxing to have to stand up for a 35 minute performance, in a hot cramped hall, and therefore they probably weren't able to concentrate and enjoy the performance as much as they deserved to be able to enjoy it.

I will raise it with the headteacher before next year's performances, or possibly before my older child's performance on Thursday.

BaconFrazzles Tue 17-Dec-13 12:53:42

Kungfu, it really annoys me when people start videoing or taking photos and hopping around with no regard or consideration for anyone behind them. It's as if their lives depend on getting little Johnny in the frame for every second that they are in the hall!

Poledra Tue 17-Dec-13 12:55:20

I'm surprised at the school - the office staff are very strict on tickets at our school plays, both for fire regulations and also to prevent this sort of melee. They don't allow siblings to sit on knees, as it goes against fire regs. Two tickets per family (not per child) but the opportunity is there to get extra tickets the day before if any are left.

I'd raise it with the HT in your situation, probably going with the fire regs aspect first.

2madboys Tue 17-Dec-13 12:56:25

Ours (secondary school) had no limit on tickets, did it on a first come, first served basis without telling us, gave out 'priority letters' to cast members, but we think to band members (including my 2 dss) a week later and after finding out (via Facebook) that it was sold out and we and a number of other families had no tickets, I discovered that one family had requested and been given 18 tickets!! After kicking up a huge stink we now have our tickets hmm

lottieandmia Tue 17-Dec-13 12:56:46

I didn't complain. Perhaps I should have. But by then it was done - I doubt they would have given my money back. I agree about people standing up and taking photos. Our school have recently been getting photographers to take pictures of all the children that we have about 8 to choose from of our particular child or group which we can buy.

Poledra Tue 17-Dec-13 12:56:50

Oh, and don't get me started on people using fucking iPads/<insert tablet of your choice> to video it. The people behind you do not want to watch their child performing through your iPad, they want to actually, y'know, see them. Put the fecker down. At least phones are quite small...

JaquelineHyde Tue 17-Dec-13 12:58:30

I go to the dress rehearsals for this very reason. Usually loads of seats and much more relaxed.

Although today for some reason some stupid Mums decided to stand at the back of the hall blocking the only exit from the hall even though there were about 50 empty seats.

I really don't get it, those of us with small babies that needed to nip in and out when they started creating had to every time say excuse me and then wait for the utter morons to shuffle ever so slightly to the side and then squeeze ourselves and screaming baby out of the door.

The problem is OP some people are just selfish fucking cunts they will always find a way to piss you off and will never care about anyone but themselves. It makes my blood boil.

BaconFrazzles Tue 17-Dec-13 12:59:02

I know it's nice to have vidoes of children, but I can never understand why some parents feel the need to record absolutely every second of absolutely everything their child ever does at school. Some parents stand with a camcorder or ipad for the whole of sports day in the summer, videoing their children.

BaconFrazzles Tue 17-Dec-13 13:00:51

That's very true, Jaqueline; the people that act selfishly in school situations are probably generally quite self centred and selfish anyway.

Oh God Madboys, I don't blame you for making a fuss. 18 tickets takes the absolute fucking piss! Glad you got some tickets eventually

2madboys Tue 17-Dec-13 13:04:00

Bacon - The first complaint was that we were offered dress rehearsal tickets after we found out it was sold out and. Not happy with this as it is very noisy as the primary school kids come to watch. We were offered two standing tickets to an evening performance which was ok-ish. After I found out about the 18-tickets family we wrote a letter to head teacher. Didn't really want to make such a fuss and become 'that parent', but couldn't let it go as it was so obviously not thought out at all. Now have 5 tickets for me, DH, DM, DD and DMIL, all seated. Sadly, I think other people didn't make such a fuss as apparently most of the parents at the dress rehearsal yesterday were parents of the band, after I was told that the letters all went out at the same time sad

advicemuchneeded Tue 17-Dec-13 13:04:25

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

kungfupannda Tue 17-Dec-13 13:05:24

It does seem to be the same "offenders" time and time again.

The standy-up film-y woman at our play is notorious for various parking/drop-off/pick-up/general acts of blatant selfishness.

BaconFrazzles Tue 17-Dec-13 13:07:56

The '12 tickets' woman is a bit like that too, kungfu; she often parks on the yellow zig zags outside the school, and often stands in the reception classrooms doorway in the mornings chatting to people.

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