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To think that theatre tickets for children's shows are extortionate?

(30 Posts)
StableButDeluded Sun 04-Oct-09 11:09:23

DH & I took DS aged 4 to see a children's show in our local theatre yeaterday. It was a stage version of 'We're going on a Bear Hunt'. Tickets were £9.50 for adults and £7.50 for children. I thought this was reasonable, though do feel slightly hmm at only £2 reduction for children's ticket.

It was his first theatre experience, he enjoyed it immensly, so I thought I'd look at booking the pantomine.

£24 for adults and £22 per child!! So I thought 'can't afford that', looked at other upcoming shows & they are all around £17 per adult and £15 per child.

I think this is very unfair given the fact that as they are children's shows, an adult HAS to attend. A measly £2 reduction is pathetic.

I do realise pantomimes and stage shows are costly to stage, but it makes me sad that something that I enjoyed fairly regularly as a child (and my parents did not have much money seems to have become so expensive that a lot of families can't afford take their children to the theatre.

carocaro Sun 04-Oct-09 11:26:29

I think it's hit and miss tbh, we went to see The Gruffalo and it was CRAP, the brown mouse was just wearing a brown t-shirt and trousers and The Gruffalo costume looked like my DS had made it! It was so disappointing as the book is so magical, I thought it was a poor effort and I emailed The Lowry in Manchester to tell them so, they never replied!

We went to see the Mr Men in a little theatre in Congleton I think and it was brilliant, fab stage sets, briliant costumes, really lively, DS1 loved it and so did I; I got a hug of Mr Happy!

The New Vic theatre in Stoke on Trent did the Wizard of Oz last year and it was truly breathtaking, so magical and emotive, me and DH were totally thrilled!

They are doing The Lion The Witch and The Wardrobe at Christmas and I can't wait.

It does cost £, so it's only going to be me and DS1 aged 7, DS2 is too young really.

£3 off for a child it pants, but with most things child related they grab you by the short and curlies from the get go!

PeppermintCream Sun 04-Oct-09 11:27:07

Yanbu. We have to make theatre trips a special treat, xmas, birthdays etc Even then only one parent gets to go otherwise it is too expensive. Would love to take DCs more often but the price is prohibitive.

Cheaper tickets may increase the number of people who can attend, and encourage people to go more regularly; which may even encourage people to continue going to the theatre once they reach adulthood.

carocaro Sun 04-Oct-09 11:27:13

I meant me and DS were totally thrilled!

StableButDeluded Sun 04-Oct-09 11:38:04

Oh I'm glad you said that about the Gruffalo, I saw that advertised and thought about booking it but again, very expensive. And I think suggested minimum age was 6, so although DS loves the book, may be a bit scary or something. Shan't bother with that one then.

DS would love a Mr Men show, I'll have to keep an eye out for that near us (cardiff).

Agree, peppermintcream. I like to think that helping children to have the opportunity to go to the theatre at a young age may envourage a love of theatre and performing arts. And also help dispel the idea that visiting the theatre is onyt for 'posh' people who can afford it.

Iklboo Sun 04-Oct-09 11:51:04

I totally in agreement with you. A trip tp see a panto would cost us the best part of £100 if we wanted decent seats. It's not like Dame Judy & Sir Ben Kingsley are in them - just somebody out of soaps we don't watch (hence our Who The Hell?).
Poor DS will have to put up with the local am dram productions for the foreseaable future
I'm sure childrens' tickets used to be half adult price when I was an ikler iklboo

TheLadyEvenstar Sun 04-Oct-09 11:55:49

I want to take ds2 to see bob the builder in a few weeks tickets are ridiculous at £18 for an adult and £15 for under 12's shock

bigchris Sun 04-Oct-09 11:56:16

oh my god my kids live the gruffalo stageshow, so much so we bought it on dvd and they still watch it now three years on, its only acted by three actors and the whole point is the costumes arent meant to be high tech! the small production feel of it is fab

deaddei Sun 04-Oct-09 15:02:34

Ridiculously expensive. We go when Kids week is on in London (late August)- 4 tickets to West End show were £120 not £240)
If I go, I want a good seat- so it's £60-75 a ticket. Children get no reduction in the West End. When you addon travel, meal,drinks could go away for a weekend on it.
So it's very much a once a year treat.

StableButDeluded Sun 04-Oct-09 15:45:12

Blimey, those London prices are horrendous! I feel a bit blush whinging about the Cardiff panto prices. And no reduction in the West End! You have my sympathy.

StableButDeluded Sun 04-Oct-09 15:55:09

Though I've just read on Cardiff's New Theatre website that due to 'current economic climate' they are now allowing people to pay for their tickets in four monthly instalments, if total cost is £75 or over. Doesn't make things cheaper, but may help the affordability of it, I suppose. It would certainly help some people.

Or I could be really cynical and say that it's also a means to get people to buy more tickets. I mean, if we really wanted to go to the panto, three tickets would be just under the £75 threshold. So I might be tempted to say 'Oh, but if we book for X show at the same time, we'll see both and won't have to pay all at once' So we end up spending more than we would have, because we perceive we can afford it & they get bums on seats.


busybutterfly Sun 04-Oct-09 19:07:28

YABU They're hideously expensive - booked tickets for me, DH, MIL and FIL and our 2DS's for panto in Windsor - was over £160!!! Over £20 per head. Phew!

NightShoe Sun 04-Oct-09 19:32:41

I thought the Gruffalo was fab, but if anyone is thinking of paying to see Peppa Pig Live we saw it today and it was terrible! It was hand puppets and you could see the actors throughout as they just walked around with the puppets on their hands doing the voices. Perhaps great for a very young child, but my 3 year old was quite perplexed by their "not very good pretending" as she put it.

pointydoug Sun 04-Oct-09 19:43:09

Panots are very expensive. SUpply and demand - theatres know there will be a strong demand for panto tickets so they can hoik the prices to help cover any less popular shows in the season, no?

A bit like holiday companies charging a lot more in school holiday time.

ermintrude13 Sun 04-Oct-09 19:43:29

A lot of commercial theatre is extremely expensive to produce - labour-intensive, technically complex etc. - but if it's a TV tie-in or a panto they know they can charge big bucks in enormous venues. There is loads of excellent subsidised theatre for children in the UK, often produced by Arts Council funded companies, who pass that subsidy directly onto punters. So if you want to see the more interesting stuff you might have to go to less glitzy venues or avoid the Christmas panto - which for many venues is the big money-spinner of their calendar - but the experience is often better, more intimate, more challenging and aimed specifically at age-groups.

Podrick Sun 04-Oct-09 20:21:40

Pantomimes are expensive because they have a big cast. The the cheaper shows have tiny casts -its as simple as that.

If you want a cheap panto then there are plenty of cheap amateur productions in villages to choose from.

islandofsodor Sun 04-Oct-09 20:43:19

Carocara, one of our students is going to be in The Lion Witch & the Wardrobe. The dc usually go with school but I want to go this year.

We loved the Gruffalo to be honest when it was at The Regent a few years ago. I thought it a great example of physical theatre and showing how you can play animals without being cliched.

morocco Sun 04-Oct-09 20:49:28

shock at those prices

check out the arts council 'free tickets for under 25 year olds' - we've been to a few free plays for toddlers and primary aged kids - you just have to pay for the adult ticket and those were usually reasonably priced. not every theatre is taking part but hopefully one near you is

ellceeell Sun 04-Oct-09 21:08:34

If anyone has 15 - 18 yr old children in London - check this out They can pay just £5 to see selected shows. My dd1 did it a couple of years ago and saw Equus, Avenue Q, etc - 2 a term for 2 years. She thought it was an amazing opportunity and saw all sorts of shows she wouldn't have seen otherwise.

theagedparent Sun 04-Oct-09 21:20:06

NightShoe I also paid a small fortune to see Peppa pig and it wasn't very good. Plus having to buy the butterfly wand and programme was a rip off.

sherby Sun 04-Oct-09 21:23:46

We just went to see the StickMan last weekend

£10.50 for adults £7.50 for kids hmm

Predictably full of upper/middle class people. It was a huge treat for us and we would LOVE to be able to go more often but 18 quid just for one parent to go it is not going to happen

glucose Sun 04-Oct-09 21:28:27

We discovered the free parking area just under the Hammersmith flyer over when we saw Milkshake the other week at Hammersmith apollo. Prices were daft, but to get anything for free in London was a bonus

bibbitybobbityCAT Sun 04-Oct-09 21:44:33

It seems expensive but people who work in children's theatre and panto really earn very little money. A few hundred pounds a week.

The Old Vic or Hackney Empire pantos will have at least one proper bona fide star which will obviously push the prices up.

Dh was rather miffed when he came home from taking the two dc to the cinema yesterday afternoon. He spent £25.65 on himself and two children (just for the seats, no refreshments).

I think thats more shocking than the theatre prices you have mentioned tbh.

paisleyleaf Sun 04-Oct-09 22:02:38

Often half empty too because of this.
The cinema's the same.
These things are going to die out if they don't sort it out.

We've only got one DC and have to limit these things.
Gone are the days when I used to get taken (with siblings) and could bring a friend too.

cat64 Sun 04-Oct-09 22:17:53

Message withdrawn

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