We're deep in the dog days of summer, but there's one reason to celebrate the season: the "A Season of Savings" promotion, sponsored by Empire State Development and the League of American Theatres and Producers, offering all kinds of deep discounting on a raft of Broadway shows. Readers of the Daily News, New York Times, and other area newspapers will soon find a special Playbill insert announcing the promotion and its discounts.
Twenty productions are participating this time around, from Rent to the Roundabout's just-opened The Boys From Syracuse. The original promotion, begun in January, was designed to help a Broadway community staggered by the attack on New York to recover its equilibrium. It worked well enough that the League and ESD felt it was worth holding a second Season, amidst a shaky cultural economy in which advance ticket sales are unusually low.
In a press conference announcing the program, League President Jed Bernstein cast the program in the light of a wider effort to support the city: The original program, he said, "was vital to the survival of many Broadway and Off-Broadway shows in the winter of 2002. But more important is the fact that Broadway...is able to continue to use its power to articulate the message that New York City is safe and open for business. The purchase of tickets to a show will enhance retail sales and the support of other leisure activities."