Wednesday, May 16, 2007

A Giant achievement for Theatre 99

Posted by Patrick Sharbaugh on Wed, May 16, 2007 at 12:14 PM

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The Have Nots! and Theatre 99 have pulled off something of a coup this year by booking old friends Aziz Ansari , Paul Scheer, and Rob Huebel — better known these days as Human Giant, of MTV fame — for four hour-long shows at Charleston Ballet Theatre from June 6-9. (Don’t know who they are? See some clips from the show on this blog’s streaming video page.)

Human Giant was actually supposed to be part of last year’s Fringe program, but they had to ax their appearance at the last minute because MTV came knocking. Their program of short comedy films debuted on the channel at the beginning of April, and it’s been a critical and audience hit — so the Charleston gig is Kind of a Big Deal, and you can bet it’s gonna sell like rosaries on Judgement Day.

If you want to OD on HG before their Chucktown shows, your chance just arrived. This morning, Aziz posted a bulletin on MySpace about a 24-hour on-air marathon Human Giant’s gonna be hosting day after tomorrow (Fri. May 18) on MTV:

“Last week, MTV told us we could get 24 hours on MTV and MTV2 to do whatever we want. So on Friday, May 18th at noon — we'll take over both channels for a full day and will host live from MTV’s Times Square studio. They’re literally letting us do whatever we want — we can program whatever shows we want, have guests, bands, music videos, anything! We just have to stay up for 24 hours and get a million hits on our website.”

Check it out on Friday. And then check back in and tell us what you thought.

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Going once, going twice...

Posted by Patrick Sharbaugh on Tue, May 15, 2007 at 5:42 PM

If anyone was looking for empirical proof that the Gate Theatre’s 19 performances of Somerset Maugham’s The Constant Wife will be the hottest tickets at Spoleto ’07, I offer it thusly — in the form of an e-mail from my stepmother:

“Patrick, thanks for the Happy Mother’s Day wishes. Also thanks for the suggestion about The Constant Wife. That got us moving to get tickets, and I have a feeling that we would’ve missed out if we had waited one more day. The only two tickets that we could get together were on the last day for $65.”

I’m such a good kid sometimes I make myself sick.

Wednesday, May 9, 2007

$2,980,000 to go

Posted by Patrick Sharbaugh on Wed, May 9, 2007 at 4:41 PM

The Big Festival reports that the lure of discounted tickets at last Friday’s Taste of Spoleto at the Gaillard pulled in $20,000. That’s $10,000 in sales per hour, for anyone doing the math. The past four years have been record-busting box office successes for the festival — last year they bested 2005 sales numbers by nearly half a mil, and they were just $26,000 shy of topping the $3 million mark. If only they’d invest a little of that bankroll on trained monkeys who pop out from beneath the stage to snatch cellphones that ring mid-performance and slap their owners, we’d all have reason to celebrate. (Disclosure: The New York TimesDavid Carr should be credited with that idea, not me.)

Friday, February 23, 2007

Spoleto’s Newest BFF: AirTran

Posted by Patrick Sharbaugh on Fri, Feb 23, 2007 at 9:41 AM

Only a few weeks ago, Spoleto board members were exulting in the news that box office business to date is tracking quite nicely with figures at this time last year — and last year, of course, they busted open records for the fourth time running, blowing out 2005's numbers by an eye-popping $400K. How happy must they be now to learn, as they did yesterday, that AirTran Airlines will begin offering daily low-fare trips between Charleston and über-hub Atlanta on May 24, the day before this year's festival opens. It's almost as if they had Spoleto in mind when they did the deal... —PS

Tuesday, May 30, 2006

Cash in Hand

Posted by Patrick Sharbaugh on Tue, May 30, 2006 at 9:26 AM

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Spoleto announced yesterday that they saw their biggest box-office turnout on record this Memorial Day Weekend, with a $27,000 revenue increase over previous years, and projected increases in ticket sales for the two operas and the chamber music series of up to $200,000.

Spoleto’s not the only festival kicking butt with bank. Have Not! Brandy Sullivan tells me that their Theatre 99 Piccolo Fringe sold out 12 of its 15 Memorial Day Weekend shows at the American Theatre and Theatre 99. It’s not likely that trend is going to slow much, either. Charlie Ross’ One Man Stars Wars Trilogy debuts tonight, and New York groups Elephant Larry and Upright Citizens Brigade are good bets to jam ‘em in this evening, too.

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