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Bright Ideas

Kids Shows That Get It

Earlier today Goldstar CEO Jim McCarthy talked about creating children's entertainment that appeals to both kids and adults. Noted authors J.R.R. Tolkien, Maurice Sendak and Neil Gaiman are all on board with the idea and we found a few live entertainment shows that are as well.According to Goldstar reviewers, these shows are great examples of entertainment that's just fun -- plain and simple, no matter what your age:From Family Improv Comedy Show in Atlanta:"My family loved our night out...

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Experience

More about Making Great Work for Children

A couple weeks ago, I talked about how children are a great audience for live entertainment that isn’t being served well, and a lot of people responded supportively to this idea.Thinking more about that, one of the reasons that not enough of this content is being produced is that there’s a false assumption that if it’s “for” children, it isn’t “for” non-children. Being almost entirely non-children themselves, the people who produce this kind of content want to program for...

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Experience

Monday Pick-Me-Up: If/Then Cast Sings “Seasons of Love”

Having a case of the Mondays? This video of If/Then cast members singing "Seasons of Love" from Rent with charity auction winners will put a smile on your face.

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Experience

Why Live Event Venues Are Never Full for Long, and Why That’s OK

Fifty percent of seats for live entertainment go unsold. Or is it 40 percent, or maybe 35? Different analysts and executives from major ticketing organizations have been quoted over the years at different numbers, but let’s just agree that it’s a substantial percentage, and a staggering raw number.But it’s also a classic “glass (or venue) half-full or half-empty” kind of question. Is the unsold seat total a bad thing, or is it more complex than that?Let’s work through it....

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ICYMI

In Case You Missed It

• Words are powerful, but when you use the wrong words to describe your business you might as well be speaking nonsense. Goldstar CEO Jim McCarthy explains why words like "guest" aren't the right way to go in live entertainment.• The Royal Opera aims to grab a younger audience by slashing prices and performing a risqué show for opening night. And that's only the beginning …• Earlier this week, we chatted with artistic director Jack Reuler from Mixed Blood...

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Marketing

The Lion King Goes Viral

Who doesn't love a little free publicity? That's exactly what The Lion King production in Australia got when the video below went viral.To celebrate the launch of the show in Brisbane, cast members sang "The Circle of Life" on the airplane back to Sydney. You can feel the energy and even if it was preplanned, the video doesn't feel that way. It's fun to watch and easy to see why everyone's sharing it.

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Selling Out With

Selling Out With Jack Reuler

Is "free cheaper than cheap"? For Mixed Blood Theatre in the Twin Cities, it seems to be. Its admission initiative called "Radical Hospitality" allows anyone to attend a show for free. Three seasons of the campaign is paying off with increased popularity and donations.After hearing about the program on HowlRound.com, we spoke with Mixed Blood Theatre artistic director Jack Reuler. He shared further insights into what aspects of the program are working, what they're continuing to tweak and what...

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Customer Service

When Bad Reviews Turn Into a Win

No one ever wants bad reviews, but in the live entertainment industry there's always the possibility that an audience won't respond to your show the way you would like. And then, what do you do? Ignore the comments, or use them to build a better event?A great example of doing the latter is haunted house/immersive experience The Purge: Fear the Night from Blumhouse Productions, makers of horror films Paranormal Activity and Insidious. The initial idea was a free-roaming house...

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Bright Ideas

The Secret to Children’s Theater That Sells

Now that you're convinced you need to "get 'em while they're young," the trick is figuring out just how you're going to get them. Disney and Dreamworks have done a remarkable job creating movies that appeal to both youngsters and adults, but how does that translate to live entertainment?Utah's Deseret News looked into just that in a three-part series on children's theater. They asked a few local experts what's worked for them and came away with some great advice...

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News

Is Opera Failing to Do the Math?

Following in the footsteps of the New York City Opera and Opera Pacific in Orange County, the San Diego Opera will be calling it quits at the end of the 2014 season.Ian Campbell, the company's general director, told the Los Angeles Times that ticket sales had been declining as well as donations, primarily because of death and the economic downturn.A follow-up piece by the Los Angeles Times expressed surprise (and a little outrage) at the closing, using San Diego's...

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