By Emily Davenport, QNS.com
A new pilot program is giving New York City’s former servicemen and women an opportunity to see Broadway shows for no cost.
Queens Councilman Eric Ulrich has partnered with the Theatre Development Fund (TDF), the nonprofit service organization dedicated to bringing the performing arts to everyone, to create the TDF Veterans Theatregoing Program.
Under the new program, the city’s former servicemen and women of all ages and who have served in any branch of the armed forces can have low-cost or no-cost admission to select Broadway shows.
“I am proud to support TDF’s Veterans Theatregoing Program, which will give our nation’s heroes access to some of the most popular shows on Broadway,” said Councilman Eric Ulrich, chair of the Veterans Committee. “Though we will never be able to fully repay the sacrifices of our brave men and women in uniform, this initiative serves as a small token of appreciation to New York City’s veterans. I’d like to thank TDF, and all participating groups, for turning this vision into a reality.”
The program launched on Dec. 17 with 50 veterans attending a matinee performance of “Miss Saigon.” Funding from Ulrich and the New York City Council will allow TDF to offer a limited number of free tickets to Broadway shows, which will be distributed through partnering veterans groups.
Additionally, talks with veterans who are working with each production will be offered in order to build a sense of community with former service members in attendance. TDF will also offer complimentary memberships to any participating veterans, so they can continue their theatergoing at reduced costs.
Future performances for the TDF Veterans Theatregoing Program include “Beautiful” on Sunday, Jan. 21; “Come From Away” on Thursday, Jan. 25; “School of Rock” on Monday, Jan. 29; “Chicago” on Sunday, Feb. 4; “A Bronx Tale” on May 16; and “Kinky Boots” on Saturday, May 19.
“We’re thankful to Councilman Ulrich for offering us the opportunity to be able to serve this wonderful group of New Yorkers,” said Victoria Bailey, TDF’s executive director. “This pilot program helps solidify our ongoing commitment to make sure that everyone in New York City has access to the performing arts.”