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Collage with photos of tickets, parking, people, and drinks that says "Everything You Need To Know Before Your Show"

9 Steps to Prepare for Your Next Night Out at the Theater

Posted by:  Marie Altmann and Megan Rapp, Public Relations Interns, The Philadelphia Orchestra and Ensemble Arts on April 18, 2023

The Philadelphia Orchestra and Ensemble Arts Philly have put together award-winning seasons for the Philadelphia region that are not to be missed. From a night at the orchestra to a toe-tapping Broadway show, there is a ticket for everyone! But what do you do after you bought the ticket?  Follow our easy checklist and make sure every part of your experience is perfectly prepared so you have the best time!

1. Receiving your tickets

Once you’ve purchased your tickets, it’s important to pick how you would like to receive them. If you’re tech-savvy, you can find your e-tickets in your inbox and can scan them at the door of the show. Prefer a physical copy? You can choose to pick your tickets up at willcall (another name for the box office) of the venue where your show is happening.

2. What to wear

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Over the years, going to a show has become more casual and laid back. So don’t feel pressured to put on your fanciest attire. Wearing something comfortable like a nice shirt and dress pants or jeans is a great option.

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Want to go all out? Try cosplaying as your favorite character or wearing merchandise from the show to really stand out.

3. Pre-show dinner and drinks


Now that you have your tickets, finding the perfect place for dinner (or lunch, if you’re attending a matinee) is your next step. Luckily, there are dozens of restaurants close to our venues that cover all your cravings. Most places require a reservation, so be sure to plan! Check out our Fun and Fine Dining: Restaurants Near the Kimmel blog to explore some of the delicious options. Don’t forget to leave room for snacks at the show!

Volvér will be temporarily closed for the summer starting June 10th. Look forward to our new restaurant launching in Fall 2024!

4. Getting here

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Getting to the theater is important, whether you are coming from Philadelphia or visiting from farther away. Driving is a great option and there are multiple garages located within a few blocks, including the Kimmel Center garage located beneath the Kimmel Center building (300 S Broad Street). Pre-paid parking can even be added to most ticket purchases!

Our location is also conveniently located near multiple SEPTA access points on the Broad Street Line, multiple bus lines, and is a short 10-15 minute walk from the Regional Rail lines at Suburban or Jefferson Stations. Plan your exact route with directions on our How to Find Us page.

5. Being on time

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One of the most important elements to consider when going to a show is your arrival time. You want to respect the actors, musicians, and other audience members by being on time or early to the performance. Be sure to account for any traffic on your way to Philadelphia and give yourself enough time in between your dining reservations and getting to the show; you’ll want ample time to find your seats, grab a snack, and use the restroom prior to the lights going down.

6. Refreshments

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Hope you saved room for refreshments! Grab the perfect light snack from concessions once you enter the performance venue. From a glass of wine to a sweet candy treat, there’s something for everyone to enjoy.

7. The perfect Playbill pic

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You’ve made it to the show, scanned your tickets, grabbed your snacks. Now is the perfect time to pull out your Playbill and take some pictures. Photos of you and your group and beautiful shots of the set are the perfect way to capture the memories forever. Make sure to tag @EnsembleArtsPhilly and use the hashtag #EnsembleArtsPhilly when you post.

8. Now, turn off your phone!

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We all come to the theater as a way to escape from normal life To be transported into a world full of music, magic, laughter, and more...and that can all be disrupted by one cell phone ring. Please be mindful of your neighbors in the audience and the artists on stage by fully turning off your cell phone. Don't know how to turn your phone off? Ask one of our ushers who are happy to assist you! Theater is a collective experience and we all must join together to create an enjoyable performance for everyone.

9. Enjoy the show!

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The lights are dimming, and the music is starting; now it’s time to sit back, relax, take your last pre-show selfie (!), and again silence your phones. There is nothing like live entertainment, and now you’ve made it to the theater. Time to sit back, relax, and enjoy every second!


You’ve come to one show, now start planning your next! Check out our full lineup of events and performances happening all year long on our website.

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