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Living in NYC

Stories for Friends. Advice for Strangers.

Amber and I entered into the Wicked lottery twice last weekend. The first time, Amber flew solo and took a stab at it on a Friday evening. If she won, I was to head over there immediately following work. She didn’t, though, so we both went together on Saturday.

A ticket lottery for a Broadway show is quite simple, and almost always the same no matter what show you’re trying to see. You need to arrive somewhere between 2 and 3 hours before show time, depending on the specific procedures of the show in question. A quick google search should clear such questions up, or just visit the link below.

When you get there, find the person with little sheets of paper and pens. It’s generally a guy wearing sun glasses, no matter the condition of the sun at the time. Anyone can sign up, and you can buy two tickets if you win (as long as you indicate that you want two on the paper). In our case, Amber won, so we got to purchase two front-row tickets for $26 a piece.

In all, we spent a couple of hours on a chance that we might get to see something we otherwise could not afford. Apparently that’s the purpose behind the cheap tickets (student rush, standing room only and lottery), and you can read more about it here. also has great deals on tickets if you sign up.

After spending a weekend playing the broadway ticket lottery, I can say with confidence that it is worth the time. A few things to look out for: you must have a photo ID with you (not that you should ever be out in the city without one), most of the time the lottery is cash only, and people will be jealous of you.