top of page

California Community Theatres: 

Opening Night Traditions

 Survey results are from Summer 2017


Do you have any kind of opening night tradition at your community theatre, for patrons or actors/people involved in the performance?













Tradition or activity for audience members:

We dedicated the presentation to them.

Band music and requests.

(We) will give up to 60 tickets to a local charity. They sell the tickets and keep 100% of the monies collected.

We have a champagne gala after the show for everyone.

We offer champagne and appetizers after premier night for patrons and actors.

"One opening night per season - generally early Fall - we award the Lifetime Service Award, and at the same time we have a party for our major donors."

Tradition or activity for actors/people involved in the performance:

For actors. Everyone dedicates the presentation to somebody that we love at the beginning of the show in public.

Sometimes Karaoke.

We have a basket of treats for the cast and crew given on opening night for the run of the show. Along with a Champagne Gala afterwards for the cast/crew/audience.

I would not call it a "tradition", but we do give away 60 tickets for charity on our first two nights. We fulfill our desire to benefit our community and we can create "buzz" in the community, good or bad.

I would be interested to hear what other theaters do and if it brought more people to the show for that night. Opening night is the weakest for us. For our upcoming show we are adding a group rate to our ticket prices. It will be interesting to see if we get any kind of response with that.

We offer champagne and appetizers after premier night for patrons and actors.

"After every opening night we have an all cast potluck - awesome time to reflect on opening night and to get pumped for the remainder of the run."



If your opening night tradition or activity involves the audience (i.e.: Gala, bar, etc), are your opening night ticket prices different than other performances? Please describe:

No, are the same price.

We have a opening night "Love it or Leave it" special. Buy 1 ticket at regular price and receive 1 ticket free. If, for any reason, you don't like the show, you can get a full refund at intermission. Of course, they have to leave at that time. We also offer a "First Friday Free" special. If we have a show on the first Friday of the month, it is a Buy one get one free special.

Our opening night ticket is $3 more than our regular ticket.

The major donors at this show get in free.

How do you think opening night traditions or activities impact your patrons or participants?

They like it because they feel part of the show.

Warm and fellowship.

These specials have definitely affected our opening night audience attendance.

It makes opening night more special and a great way for the audience to see the cast after the show.

They do love it.

The word of mouth created can have an impact on ticket sales.

The cast loves everything involving food.

"It helps build a crowd for opening night which translates into moer word of mouth and ticket sales. Plus it's a nice event to thank the actors and

have some fun!"

Who manages your opening night traditions or activities?

Me and the crew. Around 30 people.

Artistic Director

Staff and Board

The Managing Director

A board member

Usually AD or a parent volunteer will coordinate to make sure we don't end up with all sweets to eat

bottom of page