'Hamilton' Raises Ticket Prices to $849 to Stop Scalpers | NBC Chicago

'Hamilton' Raises Ticket Prices to $849 to Stop Scalpers

The move will make "Hamilton" the most expensive ticket in Broadway-history

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Joan Marcus
    Lin-Manuel Miranda and the cast of "Hamilton." Producers are raising the price for 200 or so center orchestra premium seats to Lin-Manuel Miranda's Pulitzer Prize-winning musical — from $475 to $849 .

    The best seats at "Hamilton" just got a whole lot more expensive.

    Producers are raising the price for 200 or so center orchestra premium seats to Lin-Manuel Miranda's Pulitzer Prize-winning musical — from $475 to $849 — the New York Times reports.

    The move will make "Hamilton" the most expensive ticket in Broadway-history, previously held by "The Book of Mormon" (at $477).

    Prices for the rest of the seats at the Richard Rodgers Theatre are also increasing. The 1,075 or so remaining spots, which were priced from $139 to $177, will now go for between $179 and $199.

    No one will be allowed to buy more than six tickets at a time when the next block of tickets are made available.

    The price change and new ticketing policy is in an effort to prevent ticket scalping -- often driven by online bots -- which resellers use to purchase tickets in bulk and resell for a higher price. The profit is therefore not shared by the show's producers, cast, or creative team.

    "What has certainly been frustrating to me, as a business owner, is to see that my product is being resold at many times its face value and my team isn’t sharing in those profits," "Hamilton" lead producer Jeffrey Seller told the Times. "It’s not fair."

    The bots trend, which is a civil violation in New York, led Miranda to pen a Times op-ed earlier this week calling for legislative action. The Broadway League, working in tandem with the show, is urging state lawmakers to criminalize the use of bots.

    A Times analysis suggests resellers make $60 million per year on “Hamilton” tickets.

    Seller said he got to $849 by taking the average price of tickets on the secondary market. "If I’m at $849, I think we may succeed in taking the motivation out of the scalpers to buy those tickets," he said.

    But it's all not bad news. Producers are also making 25 more seats available in the show's popular $10 "Ham4Ham" lottery. There will now be 46 seats total (or 19,000 seats per year) in the online and in-person lottery -- which typically sees more than 10,000 entries on digital days.  

    "In some ways, we’re taking from the rich to give to the poor," Seller told the Times. "Because there’s no question those premiums are subsidizing those $10 tickets."

    In addition to raising costs, "Hamilton" producers are taking other measure to restrict secondary sales, including canceling previous bulk purchases suspected to be purchased by bots. Ticketmaster has also added steps to its online purchasing process in an effort to reduce automated purchases.

    Tickets for "Hamilton" are currently sold out through January 2017. A new batch for the following four months were just made available to some American Express cardholders, and will be open to the public after Sunday's Tony Awards, for which "Hamilton" is nominated for 16 awards.