Ford's to Offer Free First Preview for COME FROM AWAY and More This Season

Ford's Theatre Society announced it is partnering with TodayTix on a new Free First Preview initiative that will give away tickets to the first preview performance for all mainstage productions.

The TodayTix mobile lottery will launch one week before the first preview of each show in the 2016-2017 season: Come From Away, A Christmas Carol, Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf? and Ragtime.

The Free First Preview initiative seeks to broaden access to Ford's Theatre programming by removing price barriers and inviting those who live and work in the Washington-area community who might not otherwise consider participation in the arts.

This season's Free First Preview performances are:

• Come From Away: September 2, 2016 at 7:30 p.m.

• A Christmas Carol: November 17, 2016 at 7:30 p.m.

• Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?: January 21, 2017 at 7:30 p.m.

• Ragtime: March 10, 2017 at 7:30 p.m.

"The Free First Preview initiative is a wonderful opportunity for anyone -- first-time audiences, long-time theatre lovers, Washingtonians and out-of-towners -- to get a taste for the vibrant work we produce on stage at Ford's Theatre," said Ford's Theatre Director Paul R. Tetreault. "By removing a price barrier, we can include those who may not otherwise visit us to experience our unique historical setting and quality artistic programming. I am thrilled for us to collaborate with TodayTix, and for audiences to discover this particular theatrical season which includes new work, classic plays and musicals."

"We couldn't be more excited to partner with Ford's Theatre to power the Free First Preview program this season," says Brian Fenty, Chairman and co-founder of TodayTix. "By providing an unprecedented opportunity for theatergoers to experience Ford's landmark programming for free, this new program is a prime example of our combined commitment to accessible theater. We are honored to leverage our technology to connect new audiences to their remarkable season."

To enter the mobile lottery, patrons must download the TodayTix app (available in Apple App Store, the Google Play or Amazon AppStore), open it and select "TodayTix Free First Previews" with Ford's Theatre. Winners will be notified by email and push notification between 10 a.m. ET and 2:00 p.m. ET on the day of the first preview. Winners must confirm their winning tickets (up to two) in the TodayTix app within one hour of being notified.

In addition, a limited number of partial view tickets will also be distributed through in-person lottery at the Ford's Theatre Box Office on the day of the Free First Preview. Patrons may sign up for two tickets per person, beginning at 6:00 p.m. An email address is required to sign up. At 7:00 p.m., the box office staff will release available tickets. In-person lottery entries are eligible for partial view seats and any unclaimed mobile lottery tickets.

For more information on the Ford's Theatre 2016-2017 season, visit www.fords.org.

One of the most visited sites in the nation's capital, Ford's Theatre reopened its doors in 1968, more than a hundred years after the assassination of President Abraham Lincoln. Operated through a partnership between Ford's Theatre Society and the National Park Service, Ford's Theatre is the premier destination in the nation's capital to explore and celebrate Abraham Lincoln's ideals and leadership principles: courage, integrity, tolerance, equality and creative expression.

The Ford's Theatre Society was founded under the guidance of executive producer Frankie Hewitt, who, during her 35-year tenure, established Ford's as a living, Working Theatre producing performances that highlighted the diversity of the American experience. Since the arrival of Paul R. Tetreault as Director, critics and the theatregoing public have recognized Ford's for the superior quality of its artistic programming. With works from the nationally acclaimed Big River to the world premieres of Meet John Doe, The Heavens Are Hung In Black, LiberTy Smith, Necessary Sacrifices, The Widow Lincoln and The Guard, Ford's Theatre is making its mark on the American theatre landscape. In the last decade, the mission of Ford's Theatre Society expanded to include education as a central pillar. This expansion led to the creation and construction of the Center for Education and Leadership, which opened in February 2012. Currently, under the leadership of Board of Trustees Chairman Eric A. Spiegel, Ford's enters a second phase of strategic planning to ensure the organization's place as a national destination for exploring Lincoln's legacy and the American experience through the intersection of history, performance and education.

Pictured: The cast of COME FROM AWAY at La Jolla Playhouse. Photo by Kevin Berne.



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