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Dear Mr. Taylor

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1 hour ago, JohnS said:

Decisions on ticket prices are surely part of the overall budget setting process where there are real pressures with Arts Council subsidy cut by 3% in cash terms and 6% in real terms and the ROH has to balance its books.  That isn't to say I endorse the ROH's approach to pricing at all and would have preferred price increases to be targeted at the more expensive seats  - placing relatively cheap seats in higher price categories resulting in significant price increases is particularly galling.

 

Well yes, but then raise prices overall, don't put huge increases on a mere handful of seats.  I mean, I think we all recognise that ticket prices may have to rise, but they could probably have got the same - or a better - result by putting £1 on all ticket prices, which would have been a lot fairer.  That is, of course, assuming that they were only interested in balancing the books - which obviously they weren't, as recent events have shown.

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12 hours ago, alison said:

 

Well yes, but then raise prices overall, don't put huge increases on a mere handful of seats.  I mean, I think we all recognise that ticket prices may have to rise, but they could probably have got the same - or a better - result by putting £1 on all ticket prices, which would have been a lot fairer. 

 

Ticket prices were raised across the board - seats remaining in the same price category went up by 6.5% comparing Swan Lake to Nutcracker (6.4% most expensive seats; 6.8% for top price amphitheatre seats).  It's seats moving to higher price categories where there were very significant price increases, with a few seats moved to lower price categories.

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18 minutes ago, JohnS said:

 

Ticket prices were raised across the board - seats remaining in the same price category went up by 6.5% comparing Swan Lake to Nutcracker (6.4% most expensive seats; 6.8% for top price amphitheatre seats).  It's seats moving to higher price categories where there were very significant price increases, with a few seats moved to lower price categories.

 

I haven’t done a thorough analysis, but the seats I plan to book for Romeo and Juliet will be £21 for matinee and evening alike and are still in the same price band as they were for Giselle (£12 matinee, £14 evening) and Manon (£12 matinee, not sure about evening) last season. So that’s at least a 50% price rise in the same band and for a similar category of production of comparable popularity.

 

They were placed in a higher category for Swan Lake, but I’m hoping that was a one-off.

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I’ve just had another look, and the most I paid for this (my habitual) price band in the last two seasons was £17 for Sleeping Beauty and the new Swan Lake (though it’s possible last year’s Nutcracker, which I skipped, cost more).

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just a thought - most of the cheaper seats that many of us on this forum buy on a regular basis, largely don't have 100% view of the stage (a sweeping generalisation on both points, I know). You would have thought that discouraging regulars who buy those tickets by large % price rises, so that non-regulars/newbies could buy them instead (unaware that they are no longer the bargain they once were) would be self defeating, as a first time experience where you can't see some of what's going on would put said newbies off ever darkening the doors again, as well as successfully driving away a previously loyal regular. Double whammy scored!

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I'm sure there are no figures available, but I would love to know how many of those visiting the Opera House as casual visitors have been encouraged to buy tickets - and even more interested to know if any of them have been enthusiastic enough to come twice. 

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1 hour ago, Lizbie1 said:

I’ve just had another look, and the most I paid for this (my habitual) price band in the last two seasons was £17 for Sleeping Beauty and the new Swan Lake (though it’s possible last year’s Nutcracker, which I skipped, cost more).

For what it's worth I have a £28 ticket for this season's Nutcracker, an evening performance. This is for an Amphitheatre seat sold as restricted view. The same seat for an evening performance of The Nutcracker cost £16 in both Dec 2015 and Jan 2017. I think I was in SCS for The Nutcracker last season!

 

The price increase for the same seat for Mayerling was less steep: £16 in Apr 2017 against £18 in Oct 2018 (both evening performances).

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57 minutes ago, ninamargaret said:

I'm sure there are no figures available, but I would love to know how many of those visiting the Opera House as casual visitors have been encouraged to buy tickets - and even more interested to know if any of them have been enthusiastic enough to come twice. 

 

They might need Sherlock Holmes to help them find the Box Office and what's on.

 

I have to say I used to treat the National Theatre the same way as people are treating the ROH, but there were always lots of current brochures and leaflets about, plus the Box Office was right by the main entrance.

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2 hours ago, ninamargaret said:

I'm sure there are no figures available, but I would love to know how many of those visiting the Opera House as casual visitors have been encouraged to buy tickets - and even more interested to know if any of them have been enthusiastic enough to come twice. 

 

You're assuming they could find the box office without satnav?

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This thread prompts me to write about a not very pleasant incident during my last visit to the ROH. I went for the Ring, and would usually pop in to the Grand Tier or the Stalls during the intervals to chat with friends there. When I did this during Siegfried (i.e. day 3 of the cycle) I was chased - literally chased - by an usher calling "here, wait a minute, here". When I realised he was talking to me (I'm not used to being addressed as "here") I stopped and asked what the matter was. He asked if I was there for the performance and I said "well, obviously", and walked away. Another usher had come up and joined him and I heard her hissing "ask to see her ticket" ,  but nothing further was said to me. I didn't connect this to Open Up and the fact that apparently anyone can wander in off the street *and get into the auditorium during a performance*, and was quite annoyed, to put it mildly. I still feel that I was treated rudely, but there is some justification for the ushers I suppose. It made me feel very unwelcome, which is sad because I travel regularly for ballet/Wagner and have spent quite a lot of money at the ROH.

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2 hours ago, ninamargaret said:

I'm sure there are no figures available, but I would love to know how many of those visiting the Opera House as casual visitors have been encouraged to buy tickets - and even more interested to know if any of them have been enthusiastic enough to come twice. 

 

Can’t be many, as those encouraged through the doors at the moment will find most performances sold out. And if you’re on a ‘spur of the moment’ thing, buying for a show 3 months + away, probably not going to happen....

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31 minutes ago, Aruna S said:

This thread prompts me to write about a not very pleasant incident during my last visit to the ROH. I went for the Ring, and would usually pop in to the Grand Tier or the Stalls during the intervals to chat with friends there. When I did this during Siegfried (i.e. day 3 of the cycle) I was chased - literally chased - by an usher calling "here, wait a minute, here". When I realised he was talking to me (I'm not used to being addressed as "here") I stopped and asked what the matter was. He asked if I was there for the performance and I said "well, obviously", and walked away. Another usher had come up and joined him and I heard her hissing "ask to see her ticket" ,  but nothing further was said to me. I didn't connect this to Open Up and the fact that apparently anyone can wander in off the street *and get into the auditorium during a performance*, and was quite annoyed, to put it mildly. I still feel that I was treated rudely, but there is some justification for the ushers I suppose. It made me feel very unwelcome, which is sad because I travel regularly for ballet/Wagner and have spent quite a lot of money at the ROH.

That is really bad 😔 My partner and I had the opposite experience - we were hovering near the Grand Tier entrance during the interval and were encouraged to go in by a very kind usher. Must have got lucky! 

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6 hours ago, Aruna S said:

This thread prompts me to write about a not very pleasant incident during my last visit to the ROH. I went for the Ring, and would usually pop in to the Grand Tier or the Stalls during the intervals to chat with friends there. When I did this during Siegfried (i.e. day 3 of the cycle) I was chased - literally chased - by an usher calling "here, wait a minute, here". When I realised he was talking to me (I'm not used to being addressed as "here") I stopped and asked what the matter was. He asked if I was there for the performance and I said "well, obviously", and walked away. Another usher had come up and joined him and I heard her hissing "ask to see her ticket" ,  but nothing further was said to me. I didn't connect this to Open Up and the fact that apparently anyone can wander in off the street *and get into the auditorium during a performance*, and was quite annoyed, to put it mildly. I still feel that I was treated rudely, but there is some justification for the ushers I suppose. It made me feel very unwelcome, which is sad because I travel regularly for ballet/Wagner and have spent quite a lot of money at the ROH.

Oh, that is terrific.  We have opened up ROH, but...

 

As I said earlier, they do not know which way is up. Does Alex Beard know nothing about leadership?

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Are you talking about the "running it as a business" bit or the "re-invigorating stakeholder relations / stakeholder and community engagement / prioritizing the ballet’s relationships with stakeholders" bit, Ian?

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1 hour ago, alison said:

Are you talking about the "running it as a business" bit or the "re-invigorating stakeholder relations / stakeholder and community engagement / prioritizing the ballet’s relationships with stakeholders" bit, Ian?

If I go to the ballet, am I a stake-holder?  If the answer is yes, why do I seem to matter a whole lot less than somebody wandering in to get out of the rain and enjoying a takeaway Chinese in the Champagne Hall?

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Well, he explains in very broad terms what they did, but too broadly for us to get any clear idea of the specific measures taken.  However, it was a bit naughty of me to have introduced this into a ROH Thread for the situations are far from identical.  To the best of my knowledge, Mr Clausen has been involved in keeping afloat just a ballet company and not the theatres in which it normally performs - there are two, I think, in Calgary and Edmonton.  And again, if I'm correct, his Board will have been responsible for the entire financing of the Company, for I doubt that it receives much (if any) Provincial or Federal support.  Canadian Forum members, feel free to tell me I'm wrong.

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