Why You Should See Live Theater

Whether it be Broadway, a high school production or small community theater, going to live shows is an incredible thing that everyone should experience at least once in their lives. Seeing theater in person fills you with emotion and keeps you enthralled until the curtain call. As a person who has gone to countless shows and has even been in musicals and children’s theater, I believe seeing live theater is an invaluable experience for many reasons.

Your Brain Will Thank You

Studies have found that students who attend live theater are more tolerant and empathetic. Findings also support that live theater helps people increase their vocabulary and comprehension of material better than they would reading it or seeing or a film version of it. Building your vocabulary and tolerance will help you immensely in everyday life, and theater is a way to do that while still being entertained.

The Stories and the Music

Regardless of whether you see a play or a musical, the story of the production will probably be the thing that sticks with you most. Some shows are hysterical, some shows are sad and some shows are both; you just have to seek out what interests you. If you see a musical, the songs will most likely be stuck in your head for days. Whether it be an upbeat group number or a somber solo, the music in almost all of these productions will leave you wanting to listen to the song on repeat. Here are just a few of the incredible songs that you can find in musical theater.

An Interactive Experience

Going to a theater can be an amazing interactive event. My friends and I recently went to a production of Natasha, Pierre & the Great Comet of 1812, which is based on the novel War and Peace by Leo Tolstoy. Sounds kind of boring, right? Wrong. The audience was brought physically into the show. The actors dance and sing around you, you’re encouraged to clap and sing along and some people were even given food at the start of the show – I was lucky enough to be one of those people that were given a pierogi by the cast members. Regardless what show you go to, you will feel immersed in the show, giving you a greater all-around experience.

It’s Not That Expensive

I know shows can often be pricey, especially Broadway shows where most seats are upwards of $200, but there are ways to get cheaper seats. For the most part, local productions, like those at community centers or schools, are cheaper in general, and those prices can rarely be changed. However, many bigger theaters, whose ticket prices are almost always higher, often offer student discounts that can cut the price significantly. Many theaters also offer discount prices for groups and for buying tickets at certain times. There are also many websites that offer discounted tickets for shows, particularly for Broadway shows. The TKTS booth in Times Square also offers discounted Broadway tickets, and all you have to do is wait in line.

The Hard Work

The people in these productions live and breathe the show for months just to give audiences the best performance possible. And it’s not just the cast that deserves appreciation, even though watching someone go on stage and open themselves up to a giant group of strangers is incredibly admirable. The set designers and the props department and the costuming department and the choreographers and the stagehands and the technicians and the band and, of course, the director, writer and producers all work constantly to make sure they put on the best show possible, and it really shows when you watch the production. It is very apparent, when you are in the audience, the amount of dedication that went into the production, which makes it all the more enjoyable.