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November 13, 2006 | 5 Comments

Post to the Host:
I PROTEST! Many of us here in the Philadelphia area have been waiting for YEARS for a live performance of PHC to be held here in our area. We faithfully listen to your show, we have seen the movie, we have come out to previous events such as the show about "Guys" a few years back held at the Academy of Music and the show with the Philadelphia Orchestra at the Mann Music Cente r. But, alas, we have never seen a live performance of PHC.

Now, just the other day I found out during a local NPR station fund drive that PHC is coming to do a live performance on January 27, 2007 but the TICKETS ARE ALREADY ALL SOLD OUT! The event, to my knowledge, and I pay attention for these things, was never advertised. That means that the only people offered the opportunity to come and who bought all the tickets are the season subscribers to the Kimmel Center, where the event will be held.

Wo uld you PLEASE, for those of us who are above average, yet are not Kimmel Center subscribers, consider holding your live performance at a larger venue so that we "above average Joes and Josephines" can have the chance to come.

Literally, I was crushed by this news, as were my parents, who also listen to you faithfully and were also at the previous Philadelphia events. Either a larger venue or could you please come back to Philadelphia again next year? There are many here who love your show and we feel as though we have been cheated out of the opportunity to see it in January 2007. On behalf of all of us in the Philadelphia area who identify with the Tolleruds and Norwegian bachelor farmers, etc., PLEASE, PLEASE consider our plight and what may be done about it.

Thanks so much for reading and thanks for enriching our lives with yours.

Philadelphia, PA

I agree, Judy, and I'm so sorry. The arrangements surrounding these tour broadcasts are worked out by our crack logistical staff and involve pages and pages of details and codicils and warranties and addenda, more than I can understand, but you're right: the tickets were offered first to Kimmel subscribers, then a considerable number were offered to the general public (advertised in various ways by the Kimmel) and those tickets went quickly. The show naturally prefers to play to an audience of listeners and that is why PHC is never broadcast before closed groups — i.e. the annual convention of morticians — and that is why we normally go through the local public radio stadion. I guess that the Kimmel is the promoter of this broadcast and so they advertised it as they normally would. But I regret that. We did a broadcast once where the first section of seats was sold to corporate people who had no idea what the show was and who came drunk and got drunker and sat there yelling at people on stage. A memorable day. An audience made up of longtime PHC listeners is a tough audience — they've heard a lot, they have high expectations — and I'd rather work hard for them than work in front of a crowd that's thinking, "When do the dancing girls come on? Where's the comedian?"


Your response was worthy of a Philadelphia lawyer, but I guess the bottom line is: no relief for Judy.

I would be disappointed, too, Judy, but if you live in Philadelphia, there are oodles of APHC shows in Manhattan every December. As I understand it, it isn't a long train ride. I live in the midwest where it is very hard to get a ticket if Garrison comes around (he needs to be cloned. I've considered going to NYC for a weekend in December because tickets appear much easier to obtain there.

If you haven't seen the show live, I think you'd really enjoy it.

Although I am not from Philly I have had the same experience, attempting to see a PCH traveling show (I currenty live in Indianapolis though have lived in Memphis, and Pittsburgh, both of which have hosted (or cities nearby have hosted) PHC or the Rhubarb Tours. For over 15 yr I had hoped to get to a show. It seems immoral to pay scalpers for PHC tickets; so non-midwestern. So, I have resigned myself to never seeing the show in person...I think I will go cry now.

I found Judy's message very interesting. I had often wondered myself why Philadelphia seemed to be overlooked each year by the PHC tour planners. I am a Philadelphian by birth, presently living in Germany, and I go back to visit my family in Philly every year. But with a ten year old son, I am limited to school holiday times, so wouldn't have been able to get to the January show even if my mother had mentioned it to me - she has a subscription for the Philadelphia Orchestra at the Kimmel, and presumably received some advertising about PHC. I had also considered trying to get home in December once my son is a bit older, in order to see the show in New York, as suggested by Julia Star. But unless Garrison is cloned (as she also suggested), that option may be wishful thinking - even he can't go on forever, although I surely wish he could! So when I found out the next PHC cruise would be in Europe, I rushed to book a cabin. A rather expensive way to finally see a live show - but at least I get the Norwegian fiords as well!

My wife and I spent quite a few fruitless years waiting for PHC to come to us before realizing that not much we have wanted in life just showed up on our doorstep. Since that realization we have traveled from Michigan to the Town Hall and the Fitzgerald on a very modest budget, with no regret. If you want to catch a fish, you need to go to the river!

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