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Festival Box Office for Artists

FringeArts manages online ticket sales for all; artists participating in the Philadelphia Fringe Festival as well as hosts an on site Festival Box Office at 140 N. Columbus Blvd. for walk up ticket sales and questions. Artists are responsible for their own front of house check in experience at their venues and can sell walk up tickets to their performances.

This page includes information and resources on Fringe Festival ticketing policies, front of house management, and adding performances and tickets into the Fringe Festival schedule. 

Fringe Festival Box Office Policies

Ticketing Policy & Fees

  • Artists may only offer ONE ticket price option for their event + a Student & 25-and-under discount. 
  • Artists set their own ticket price, but will honor FringeArts discounts indicated below. 
  • Artists must have at least 80% of ticket inventory available through the Festival Box Office.
  • FringeArts will retain 10% of any revenue from tickets sold through the Fringe Festival Box Office. 
  • Artists keep 100% of revenue from tickets sold on their own and at the door of the show. 
  • Ticket buyers will pay a $1-3 processing fee (depending on ticket cost) added for all credit card transactions (FringeArts does not retain these funds. They are remitted to a third party).

Sales Reports

The FringeArt Box Office generates ticket reports for participating artists to keep track of their ticket income and expected attendance

  • Weekly Sales Reports will begin in early August, sent to the main admin contact email provided by the artists. This report can only be sent to one person and includes patron email addresses and any associated discounts.
  • Daily Sales Reports will begin mid-August
  • Final Sales Reports and door lists will be sent two hours before every performance. The Festival Box Office will stop selling tickets two hours prior to the start of each performance.

Attendance Tracking

All at-the-door ticket sales must be recorded and reported in Eventotron.com (registration platform) after the festival by the survey deadline.

Receiving Ticket Income

  • Artists MUST complete all steps of Fringe Festival participation in order to receive ticket income. This includes a post-festival survey, attendance numbers, proof of insurance, and necessary tax documents (W-9 & REV-1832)

*These policies are subject to change. All registered artists will be immediately notified of any change.

Box Office Discounts

There are a few discounts that participating artist are required to offer that will be automatically applied by the Festival Box Office

  • Students & 25-and-Under are entitled to $5 off the standard ticket price of any show with tickets over $20. These can be purchased as pre-sales or walk up by showing a student ID/ ID. 
  • FringeArts Members receive 20% off for all shows with ticket prices OVER $15 . 
  • Groups of 10+ are eligible for a 25% discount (Arranged in advance through the Box Office)
  • Press Pass entitles holder to two free tickets (Arranged in advance through the Marketing Dept)

Artist Rush Cards

Participating artists are entitled to receive a $5 Artist Rush card which allows them to purchase a walk up ticket to any Fringe Festival show for $5 if there are seats available at showtime.

NOTE: all events in the Fringe Festival must honor the Artist Rush discounts for fellow artists but ONLY if there are available seats at showtime.

Patron Contact Information

FringeArts collects patron information when they purchase tickets to any shows in the Philadelphia Fringe Festival. This information includes name, email, and phone numbers. Artists will receive some of this information in their door lists and reports and may request this information after the close of the festival for their records.

  • Patron information will be released to Artists upon receiving an email request no later than 90 days after the close of their show. In order to be eligible to receive this information, all artists must have submitted all final documents to FringeArts including W-9s and box office reconciliations.
  • Artists may not share patron contact information with other patrons (ex. mass emailing ticket buyers without BCC)

Cancellations, Closings, and Show Information Changes

The information that artists submit in Eventotron.com must remain accurate through the festival. If changes come up, there are a few rules about how they are managed.

  • Artists must contact the Independent Artist Program Manager (April@FringeArts.com) with any and all show changes immediately. 
  • Shows may not be canceled except for extraordinary circumstances (ie: an outdoor production being rained out). 
  • Shows may not be canceled due to low attendance. 
  • Presentations taking place during open gallery hours such as visual art installations and durational performances must be accessible during all hours advertised. If an advertised date or time listed on festival platforms is no longer available to the public, artists must contact April@FringeArts.com immediately.

Creating Performances & Tickets

Creating Performances in Eventotron

All Fringe Festival Artists will use the registration and information collection platform Eventotron to submit their show details, including deates, times, and ticket prices. before disclosing dates, times, and prices, artists must first designate a venue for their performance. for more information on venues, please visit FringeArts.com/Festival-Venues

Once a venue is selected or an artist adds a new venue in Eventotron, artists create their performances by entering dates, times, and ticket prices.

Under the Venues name in the info collection tabs, artists will click a button that says dates, times, and prices:

The Artist will the ADD PERFORMANCES/SESSIONS

And a screen that looks something like this will pop up to add in all of the dates and ticket prices

Once all of this information is input and saved in Eventotron, FringeArts uses this data to add an artists dates to the festival website, ticketing platform, app, and print listings.

Tips on Setting Performance Dates & Times

fringe Festival Artists may select any dates and times they like as long as they are within that year’s Philadelphia Fringe Festival dates. Performances taking place outside of the listed dates will not be included in the Fringe Festival. 

When choosing dates and time for performances artists should consider the following: 

  • How many performances can occur based on budget, capacity, staff, etc.?
  • How many performances can reasonably be filled based on venue capacity and audience potential?
  • How many dates of the festival would the artist like to have off to enjoy other events?
  • What might be peak times for other competing events? 
  • What times/dates will the intended audience be available?
  • What times/dates will the neighborhood be busy? Should those times be avoided or capitalized on? 

Date/Time Setting Tips

  • Don’t overextend yourself! The Fringe Festival is often 3-4 weeks long, this does not mean that performances have to run for the full length of the festival!
  • Talk to other artists! Based on the type of performance, artists may want to know what their fellow artists are up to to avoid conflicting dates and splitting audiences. 
  • Mix it up! Audiences have different schedules, artists may want to consider offering a mix of weekend and weekday performances. 
  • Be consistent! It is always good practice to have all or most performances at the same time. For example Sept 12, 13, 14 & 17 at 8pm. When schedules become complicated, for example Sep 12 at 7:15pm , Sept 13 at 8pm, Sept 17 at 7:30pm audiences can get confused and mix up their times. Simple information is always best. 

Alternative Ticket Options

There are a few alternative ticketing options that have recently become popular for events

Pay What You Can/Wish – Pay What You Can options are becoming more and more popular for Fringe Festival performances. This means that there is an option to pay to attend a performance, but the ticket buyer chooses how much they wish to pay. The Philadelphia Fringe Festival has two Pay What You Can options for artists interested in offering this range. 

  • PWYC $0 – $20 for artists who do not mind having a free option
  • PWYC $5 – $20

Pass the Hat – Pa ticket option not formally built into the ticket platform, but is a popular method of fundraising in international festivals. Pass the Hat means that the show is free to attend, and the artist collects optional donations from the audience at the performance. This option can be very lucrative, however, artists should not rely only on Pass the Hat if they are budgeting for a specific amount of ticket income. 

Free – Many artists participating in the festival will choose to set up a Free RSVP instead of selling tickets at a set price. Artists considering this option should keep in mind that many audiences search for specifically for free shows HOWEVER audiences who RSVP to free performances are less likely to attend after RSVPing. 

 

Front of House

Check In & Door Sales

While FringeArts manages online pre-sales, artists will be responsible for managing check in and walk up sales to their performances. It is highly recommended that the artist secures one or two volunteers to manage the check in and sales experience. 

Check In – Ticket Reports and Door Lists from FringeArts will be sent to artists as a Word document.  Artists should then print this document, or forward to whoever is responsible for check in at the door. When ticket buyers arrive, if they have already purchased a ticket in advance, their name will be on the door list.

Door Sales – Not all Fringe Festival audience members purchase tickets in advance. All artists should make sure that there is an easy way to purchase tickets at the door. Artists should be prepared to accept ticket payments through a digital payment method (Paypal, Venmo, Zelle), or have change available to receive cash payments. Artists should arm their front of house staff with necessary equipment such as a laptop with a charger, printed QR code for payment links, wifi or hotspot, cash bank with small bills and change.

It’s recommended to record names and email addresses from walkup ticket sale patrons for your future mailing lists! FringeArts requires artists to submit door sale numbers, but does not require artists to submit names and contact of walk up ticket buyers.

 

 

Staff & Volunteers

Depending on the venue and production, a Fringe Festival presentation may require front of house staff and volunteer support to run smoothly. Artists should consider their need for these front of house positions in addition to their production staff.

Box Office/Check In – Responsible for checkin in patrons and selling walk up tickets. Box Office staff should stay outside of the venue while the show is happening to watch for late arrivals and walk ups.

House Manager – The house manager will be responsible for managing box office and volunteers, as well communications with production staff to get the show started. 

Ushers – Depending on the size of the venue, the production may require 1-2 ushers per show. These ushers report to the house manager and are responsible for seating and assisting patrons. 

Emergency Management

Staff and volunteers should have knowledge of all exits in the building and access to a staff contact list. There should also be a first aid kid and a fire extinguisher on site, and the House Manager/ Stage Manager should be aware of their locations.

Sample Evacuation Procedure:

As a volunteer usher, you will be assigned to an audience entrance door, and are a LEADER in the event of an emergency that necessitates evacuating the building.

The need to evacuate will be signaled by the fire alarm or a FringeArts staff member announcing that there is an emergency in the building.

LEADERS:
Quickly and firmly get the attention of your section of the audience and say:
“Ladies and Gentlemen, please follow me and I will show you the best way out of the building. Everyone please follow me.”
Remain in the lead. Do not stop to hold doors open for patrons.

CROWD:
If you are not assigned to a door, you are part of the crowd.
You, as trained staff, walk along with the audience until you FIND A JOB.

JOBS:
Hold open doors for patrons to exit quickly
Discourage restroom use
Prohibit use of elevator
Offer assistance to patrons using wheelchairs or who need extra assistance with mobility
Encourage patrons to remain calm and continue moving

Run of Show Checklist

Artists should consider developing their own run of show procedures depending on their needs. Here is a sample checklist:

PRESHOW: 

  • Check in with Venue Manager and/ or Stage Manager 
  • Give Box Office bank to box office associate (count cash in box to make sure it is at the appropriate amount) 
  • Set up check in equipment/ Box Office Table Set late seating reserved signs/ other special reserved signs 
  • Set up Volunteer table with stuffers, programs & badges 
  • Greet ushers at 1 hour before curtain, hand out badges, and suggest a bathroom break while they stuff programs 
  • Review usher instructions with the ushers and station ushers to their appointed locations by 25-30 minutes before show 

OPENING THE HOUSE: 

  • Open House w/ SM or VM 
  • Walk around the lobby and assist where needed : Ask people to take their seats at 7 minutes to show start time 

5-10 MINUTES TILL CURTAIN: 

  • Check in with the Box Office
  • Check in with the Stage Manager/ Venue Manager 

SHOWTIME: 

  • Give the Stage Manager/ Venue Manager “thumbs up” to start the show anytime between 3 and 5 minutes after scheduled curtain time. 
  • Have ushers and volunteer ticket seller take an available seat, if no seat available issue comp voucher 

AFTER SHOW STARTS: 

  • Escort late patrons to Late Seating at designated times
  • 20-30 minutes into show: put away TicketLeap equipment 

AFTER THE SHOW: 

  • Open doors after curtain call is over 
  • Have the Ushers pick up programs & trash in the house and lobby. Keep reusable programs
  • Collect volunteer badges and dismiss ushers 
  • Sort through programs that Ushers said were O.K, re-stuff and replace for use again.
  • Turn in House report via email or drop off 
  • Check Out with Venue Manager 

 

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