Hamilton 101 for the Mathematically Challenged
All those who suspected Hamilton, with it’s scarcity of tickets and huge prices for those who are lucky enough to get a ticket, is not exactly a show of the people, can now lay aside their fears. The show’s producers, in an effort to beat the scalpers at their own game, have kindly raised the box office price to a record $849 for premium seating to meet the price of those nefarious crooks.
But there’s more good news.
Lead producer Jeffrey Seller is pretty sure scalpers believe Hamilton fans won’t pay more than $849 per ticket and so will have no incentive to buy blocks of tickets they can resell at a much higher price. That means you will pay the $849 to the box office and not the scalpers, and the producers can keep all their profits.
Aren’t you happy?
For those who are a bit skeptical of these producers’ generosity, let me offer an alternative solution. The box office could refuse to sell more than a pair of tickets to any person or organization that is not a certified travel or booking entity. For those who want to take their grandparents, the limit could be increased to four. Problem is that would keep the money out of the scalpers’ pockets, but wouldn’t get it into the producers’.
In fact, it’s quite possible the producers welcomed the scalpers with open arms when Hamilton first came to Broadway. Let’s face it, scalpers insure a scarcity of tickets. And nothing increases ticket sales (or audience satisfaction) as much as difficulty in getting those treasured tickets. Even if you don’t like the show, you can keep your opinion to yourself and brag about having seen it.
But things have gotten out of hand. “It’s not fair that my product is being resold at many times its face value and my team isn’t sharing in those profits,” said Seller. One cannot help but feel for Sellers and Team Hamilton. True, they’re not exactly losing money; but why shouldn’t they be making as much as the gonifs who are cheating the public? The show’s sold out until January, and the scalpers have served their purpose. It’s time to get all that money back in the proper hands.
Fortunately, the producers have not forgotten the poor. They’re also doubling the number of $10 lottery seats for every show, which means that 19,000 people per year will be able to see the show for only $10.
Sellers claims the premium seats are subsidizing the $10 seats. But let’s do a little math. If Hamilton plays eight times per week and there are 52 weeks in a year, then the show runs 416 times per year. Divide 416 into 19,000 and you get a bit over forty-five$10 seats per performance. But just think; one $849 ticket all by itself could provide 84 tickets at $10. So who’s really reaping the benefits of this new pricing?
You don’t have to be Secretary of the Treasury to figure that one out.