If you’re hoping to snag “Hamilton” tickets for a holiday present, keep this in mind: They aren’t on sale yet.
Yes, you might see several hundred posted on ticket resale sites at exorbitant prices, but official single tickets for “Hamilton” won’t be on sale until spring, shortly before its May 22-June 10 arrival at the Fox Theatre. In fact, tickets for any theatrical production at the Atlanta venue beyond the January run of “The Lion King” and February’s “Rent” (which goes on sale this weekend) are not yet available.
Ticket prices for the Atlanta shows won’t be unveiled until the on-sale dates are announced, but in Tempe, Ariz., where the show will open in late January, they range from $75-$185; the years-long Chicago run has seats from $197-$597, depending upon location and performance day/time.
“Anything you see on the (resale) market is a risky chance and a whole lot of money you may or may not get back,” said Jamie Vosmeier, senior director of sales and marketing at the Fox. “Avoid at all costs eBay and Craigslist and never buy off the street. When you are buying resold tickets and you get a print-at-home ticket, that’s also a sure sign that you probably bought a fake ticket. But the scalpers have gotten crafty and we’ve even seen counterfeit hard tickets.”
Keeping “Hamilton” tickets out of the hands of ticket brokers has been a mission for the Lin-Manuel Miranda creation, a cultural juggernaut that has stunned even theater industry veterans with its continued popularity.
Many of the venues across the country that will present the musical utilize Ticketmaster and its Verified Fan Program. The Fox Theatre, however, uses in-house ticketing, so the only authorized route to purchase tickets will be via http://www.foxtheatre.org.
“Any time there is a show that’s this popular, we run the risk of seeing huge interest in the secondary market,” said Vosmeier. “There’s huge interest in the show right now with people saying, ‘Oh, tickets are so expensive.’ No, they’re not. They haven’t gone on sale yet.”
So, then, what about all of those tickets you do see on sale now for $700-$1,000, most prominently on ticket resale site StubHub?
Well, subscribers to the Broadway in Atlanta series were able to purchase season tickets in February, and while purchasing a subscription for the purpose of reselling tickets to the buzziest production on the slate at an excessive rate isn’t condoned, it’s also not illegal in Georgia.
Cameron Papp, a spokesperson for StubHub, said there are approximately 30-60 “Hamilton” tickets listed for sale for each night of its Atlanta run — a relatively small number, he noted.
The site doesn’t set a price cap on any of its sales, instead functioning as an access outlet.
“We feel the market is going to dictate the correct price for a ticket,” Papp said. “When you talk about ‘Hamilton,’ it’s a gigantic event with lots of demand, so you’re talking about a situation with a lot of demand and not so much supply. Low or high, the marketplace is going to dictate the price.”
Papp also stressed that StubHub sales are guaranteed and that the company will step in and purchase tickets from another seller on its own site to make sure an order is fulfilled or in some circumstances, provide a refund.
Vosmeier and Broadway in Atlanta, which is presenting “Hamilton” at the Fox, know that the resale market is a challenge to monitor, but, said Vosmeier, “all we can do is educate (potential theatergoers) and remind them that foxtheatre.org is the only authentic source to purchase a ticket to ‘Hamilton’ or any other show.”
Likewise, Russ Belin, vice president of Broadway in Atlanta, suggests signing up for the free Broadway in Atlanta email blast (www.broadwayinatlanta.com) to receive immediate information about single ticket sales and to purchase tickets through the Fox.
“There is,” Belin reiterated, “no place to buy ‘Hamilton’ tickets right now for Atlanta.”