Celeb Spot: What It’s Like to See ‘Live with Kelly and Ryan’

One of the many perks that come with living near New York City is all the opportunity to see live entertainment. This can come in the form of concerts, musicals, comedy shows, sports games and more. I luckily scored some “LIVE with Kelly and Ryan” tickets through a handy site called 1iota recently (it’s the secret to many free show tapings in various cities). This is a breakdown of the experience. 

Check-in

I arrived with a friend at 7 Lincoln Square, NYC at 6:30 in the morning. While check-in did not begin until 7:15 a.m., there were already two lines formed outside the entrance doors: one for priority check-in and one for standard check-in. Luckily, we had priority.

The line started moving at around 7:20 a.m. and we were through security and in the queue by 7:30 a.m. The security consisted of a regular body scanner you would see in an airport (not the new kind you step into with your hands up) and a scan of bags and electronics.

We patiently stood in that line for about an hour, during which we were encouraged by staff to browse through the show’s store that sold t-shirts, mugs and more. 

Entrance to the studio

At about 8:35 a.m. we were lead into the “Kelly and Ryan” studio and casually directed into seats. My friend and I sat almost right in the center of the studio behind the cameras. Luckily, the cameras were not in our way and we had the perfect view of the set.

We were then handed raffle tickets with numbers on it (you have to be at least 18 to receive one). The tickets coincide with the segment in which Kelly and Ryan have a caller try to answer a question in hopes of winning an extravagant prize. After the short quiz, the caller picks a number, and the holder of the ticket with that number goes home with a prize. Unfortunately, we did not have any luck with our tickets. 


Warm up

Around 8:45 a.m., the audience hype-woman came out to warm up the crowd and encouraged everyone to clap and cheer. Almost immediately after, the notorious Michael Gellman, who has served as the show’s executive producer since 1987 (it was then known as “The Morning Show”), came out and humbly introduced himself.

Then, he got down to business: he had to find the Trivia Dancer. Gellman pulled four excited women down from their seats to shimmy and shake in front of the whole audience. Gellman narrowed the competition down to two women after measuring cheers from the crowd and then allowed them to have one final chance to win the crowd over. The audience chose an eccentric woman from Cherry Hill, New Jersey.

The show

Riding off the excitement from the dance competition, the show started right away at 9 a.m. with the entrance of the hosts, Kelly Ripa and Ryan Seacrest. The show, which was Ryan’s first time back after being sick for a few days, started with an elongated banter between the two. The guests of the day were “Whiskey Cavalier” actress Lauren Cohan, “Shazam!” star Zachary Levi and actress Abbie Cornish, who demonstrated a recipe from her new cookbook. 

Photo Courtesy of Christina Betances-Orrell. 

The end

The show is taped live, and between commercial breaks, the two hosts were filming promos for other time zones. The whole taping lasted an hour. Once finished, Kelly and Ryan said thank you and goodbye and walked backstage. We were escorted out to the street, where there was a line already forming for the second taping of the day (there are not always two tapings per day).

Show tickets for “Kelly and Ryan” are always free. It is an affordable twist on live entertainment and can be enjoyed by the whole family. Just make sure to plan ahead, as tickets are released about a month in advance.