What are previews or preview performances?
Previews are shows that the public can view prior to the official opening night of the show. For newer produced productions or premieres this is a very crucial time for the director, creative team and actors to test out ideas, gauge audience responses, identify problems and opportunities. After each performance notes will be given to the actors and creative team to address any adjustments before the press attend opening to review it.
The great news is that many times the prices are cheaper for these performances and the show is fantastic. The show will run continuously and will most likely only be stopped for a technical difficulty to safety precaution. Out of all the preview performances I have seen only one was stopped due to a fire alarm going off.
Each production is different and by going to the preview you may miss some of the polishing or extra magic that happens later in the run of the show. On the other hand, you might get to experience some magic of your own and things that do not make the final production.
Look for the word “Previews” on the production’s website or just compare ticket prices from the very first performance available to those offered towards closing. It can be a $7 or $10 difference.
If you are able to drive to the particular theater’s box office to buy tickets it may save you an additional online convenience fee for purchasing tickets over the phone or online. However, many times the convenience fee is worth it for the option of buying the tickets just off your phone and printing your tickets.