It’s the 49th day of 90+ degree heat in D.C., but the team behind Twelfth Night doesn’t want you to suffer, parched and delirious, on the sidewalks of 7th Street in pursuit of Free For All tickets this year. The Shakespeare Theatre departed from tradition today in offering this very sensible way to snag free tickets: An online lottery.
“Last year, high demand created long lines in the summer heat. This lottery is intended to provide a safer and more pleasant experience for all patrons,” said a Shakespeare Theatre press release. Free For All performances were formerly held outdoors in the Carter Barron Amphitheater, but moved indoors in 2009, once the Sidney Harman Hall opened. Now, even the process of getting tickets to the performances will take place in the glorious breeze of an overworked air-conditioner.
However, the new system also means that all entrants in the lottery have an equal chance at snagging tickets — good news for the lazy, bad news for the fanatical fans who made sure they were first in line for previous Free For Alls. To enter the lottery, visit the Shakespeare Theatre’s website after midnight on the day of the performance, cross your fingers, and check your email later that afternoon to see if you’re one of the lucky ones. There will be a few tickets available at will-call, if any lottery winners don’t claim their pair. Still the surest way to claim your free tickets for Free For All? Pay for them - in the form of a season subscription, or joining the Friends of Free For All program.