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Shakespeare Theatre Now Offers 1,000 Free Tickets Per Production

The new Free Will program is aimed at making theater accessible to all.

Photograph by Flickr user Daniel Lobo.

Love that warm cultured glow you get from seeing a play but not the cold, hard cash it requires? Shakespeare Theatre Company feels your pain: On Monday, the theater announced the launch of a new Free Will program, in which it will give away 1,000 free tickets for each production in the current season.

Gratis admission is nothing new for STC, which has been offering its Free for All series every year since 1991. Free Will, in addition to boasting an excellently punny name, extends the idea to the whole 2014/15 season beginning with the current run of the Michael Attenborough-directed As You Like It, which goes through December 14 (though excluding the short February run of Dunsinane and special presentations). “With Free Will, we strive to open our doors to those who do not, or feel they cannot, see theatre and therefore grow the number of people who habitually attend performances in the future,” managing director Chris Jennings says in a press release.

The free tickets will be distributed throughout the course of each play’s run, around 150 to 200 tickets a week, spread across as many performances as possible. Each week’s allotment will be available on a first come, first served basis at the box office, online, or over the phone beginning Monday at noon, with a portion set aside for schools, nonprofits, and other community organizations. Once free tickets run out, you can find the usual discounts for seniors, military, and those under 35, plus rush tickets—or just wait and try again the next week. You can go to as many as you’re able to get tickets for, though they’re nontransferable and all seat assignments are final.

Shakespeare Theatre’s season includes The Tempest, directed by Ethan McSweeny and opening December 2; The Metromaniacs, opening February 3; Man of La Mancha, beginning March 13; and Tartuffe, opening June 2, plus the 25th annual Free For All, which is TBA.

For more information, visit Shakespeare Theatre’s website.