Friday, October 28, 2011

Soap Fan Events: What Say You about Pricing??


I recently came across an event that was being held in my "neck" of the woods--and by that I mean on the East Coast. We basically get very few GH events out here because of our proximity to LA. Lately, there has been more however, and the band Port Chuck came to pay a visit last month in Rochester (shock horror). The most expensive VIP passes at $250 sold out in a day. This got you access to the band before the show and a bunch of extras including photo ops. There was a $150 package, an $89 dollar one (to sit down) and a $50 general admission--standing up. I went to the "fan" event before the show and paid zero dollars. I didn't see the band, but had fun meeting up with other GH people in the area. 

I've seen actors at the mall, back in the day when it was 'free'. Of course, you did have to usually pay for a photo to be signed, even if you waited in line.  (and the lines were long). I never chose to wait in line. I just went and people watched in the crowd. I finally sprang for a trip to NYC to see Nancy Lee Grahn 2  years ago in Manhattan. It was a blast-- only $70 and she spent a lot of time with each table. I met up with great friends from twitter as well. The event was planned well, Nancy sat with fans, signed whatever you gave her, got her photo taken a million times and gave us all photos as well. With the flight down and the hotel, it was enough just to do that. We used it as a good weekend get away for the wub hub and I! 

The second event I attended was in Toronto. My brother and I drove up and stayed the night. The event was $150 to see Lisa LoCicero, Ronnie Marmo and Dom Zamprogna. This was a full charity event. The proceeds went to Make a Wish Canada  and one of the children that was sponsored for a Blue Jays Game came and was honored. There were munchies and good times had by all.  The actors signed whatever you wanted and even waited longer to get their photos taken by everyone. 


I've never been to the GH Fan event but I see most tickets go from somewhere between $100 and $150? This usually includes dinner, a "meet and greet" and a few actors for the most expensive of the bunch.  Most are around  $125. This is a weekend event however, so you can fly out, stay and do many things while you're there. Fans have parties and cocktail hours abound. Point is, you can make a "trip" out of it.  There was also the Soap Weekend at Disney World, where for admission you could see the stars at MGM and wait for autographs. (you could even ride the rides on that money!!)



I was shocked to see the price of a fan event being held in Long Island with 2 actors. For 4 hours you can eat a buffet dinner and have 2 cocktails  (paid). The cost? with fees it comes to $280ish. Now is it just me or this is just plain nuts? None of it that I can see is going to charity, btw.  I can't even think of high-end concerts that go for that kind of dough. Especially in this economy and because many fans may have to travel there and stay over night, that's a ton of $$. Would you pay this kind of money to attend an event? I totally think that actors should charge what they think people will pay, I don't begrudge them that. They have to travel themselves and should be compensated. I just wonder if this kind of money leaves a LOT of people out.

How do you feel about paying to "see the stars"?? How much is the most you'd pay. I might pay $300 for a set tour....maaaaayyybe. That's about it. Not to see 2 people for 4 hours.  Am I being too crabby? I guess if they can get it, go for it.

17 comments:

Barbara Darlin said...

I don't think they realize they need fans now more than ever. Trying to earn extra income off appearances is insulting.

Of course they should recoupe expenses but the events themselves should be their way of supporting/maintaining the fan base they so desperately need now.

They must realize their fans are part of the "99%" who have to prioritze expenses every single day.

kdmask said...

I just think $280 is excessive. $150 yeah, I could see it with dinner and stuff.PLUS there's only ONE price. ;/

Anonymous said...

I, personally, would never pay to see anyone who wasn't giving me something in return--like a concert or even a comedy show. I don't consider seeing a TV star and listening to them say nothing for hours being given something.
I think the price is excessive, I suppose if it were Port Chuck and you saw four stars and got pics and autographs I could see it, but no not me.
That's a lot of cash if they sell out --I think it was limited to 200 ppl-- it leaves a bad taste in your mouth about the two ppl involved. It's kinda like the aftermath of a natural disaster where the price goes up on everything--we call that gouging don't we.
That said maybe their 'real' fans don't feel that way.

Anonymous said...

According to what I read, when DZ was in the Chicago area a few weeks ago the cost was around $55. I think drinks were extra. Some of the photo money was going to charity.

I can't remember that exact amount but NLG's even last December was a pizza dinner with her. Some of the money went to charity and it was nowhere near $200 or $300.

I think the $280 is excessive but I suppose the actors need to get it while they can as no one will be interested if GH goes off the air.

Hope said...

I have always felt they are too expensive....especially if you have to travel to get there...

Anonymous said...

I feel it was a ridiculous amount, none of which goes to charity. And as you said, with the cost of travel to and fro, plus accommodations, it's just plain crazy. I wouldn't spend that amount of money to just hear someone basically talk about what's on the show. You know you're not going to get scoops. So to just sit and stargaze, uh NO. But, you know what they say about a fool and his money.

Anonymous said...

If you're into hiphop, JZ and Kanye are only going for $250.

kdmask said...

NLG's was $70 when I saw her in NYC -- and that was an awesome amount of time with her. It really only covered the hotel rental and food costs.

bl said...

I once spent $250 for a fan event, but it was 8 hours long where the actors were in the same room as the viewers (there were breaks in the day for dinner and such) and 11 actors attended (1 called off last minute). This was a Guiding Light, So Long Springfield event and with that show off the air, it was one of the last events they would have. None of the proceeds went to charity, but in those eight hours, I got to speak with, got autographs or get photos with everyone except one of the actors. There was a brunch in the morning where you could get photos, signatures and such this was the most expensive thing, then in the afternoon was actors Q&A from the audience and more photos/hugs, and then at night there was a stage show (singing, mock game show with audience members, fans picked from the audience to act with actors, and actors talking with a moderator). To go to the brunch you had to also pay for either that afternoon or night session, but if you just wanted to be there during the afternoon or evening it was about $100. When I saw the price for Port Chuck, I thought that was too much, for just four performers singing without a charity element.

I've also gone to charity events tied into soaps, but never paid $250. I was at the NYC bowling event earlier this month and it was for charity with mainly current OLTL people and GL alums. That was $120 if you bowled and that included the shoe rental. All attendees (people who didn't bowl paid $80) got free food, soft drinks, a gift bag and t-shirt. They raised $15,000 for a 4 hour event and more than a dozen actors attended.

I went to an amusement park event once in the 90s and all I need was to pay for admission. That had four actors (2 from west coast and 2 from east coast shows). When I went to a mall appearance, photos with the actor and the signature were free.

As an east coast person, I've never gone to a GH event as they are so expensive. I wish they would come up with something that was more reasonable.

Anonymous said...

SBu is all about the money. He doesn't care what he has to do to get it from his fans. I used to be a Jason fan, until I saw just what the actor is willing to do, in the name of the mighty dollar. KM has an inflated opinion of herself, and her stardom...but I think this pricing is more SBu's idea. You are right too...they need fans more than ever right now...but I think SBu is thinking he better strike now, before the bottom falls out from under him. The show may not last much longer...there goes all that wonderful extra money he makes, if the lose the GH draw. Sorry KDmask...you didn't name them...but everyone knows who you are talking about.

Anonymous said...

It's simple, You don;t have teh money? Don;t pay. You do and feel like you want to go? Do it. It is no ones business what others are willing to pay to do whatever. No one is forced to do anything they do not want to do.

Anonymous said...

It all comes down to ego, not only for these soap events, but many other celeb events these days. What people are willing to pay validates the celeb's worth. I agree with you many of these prices are way too high. But the soap events are still some of the cheaper ones.

Look at the price of some concert tickets, upwards of $200 for people like the Eagles. And that is not even for the best seats! Plus the ticket vendors themselves now have huge prices for the "premium" seats.

And the really crazy prices are at the sci-fi conventions. Has anyone else here been to one? You pay a fee to get in. Then each celeb sets their price. Not only do they charge you for the autograph, but many also charge for a photo with them. One famous 60's superhero actor wanted $50 to take a photo with him and then $75 for the autograph! And he would only sign certain items! Actors from one blockbuster movie wanted $125-150 per autograph. Lately the cons have an "exclusive" photographer, where you can't even take your own photo with the celeb. You have to buy the sitting, for $100 or more, which involves standing by the celeb for a second and hoping the photographer got the shot in focus. You barely get a hello out before you are shuffled along. I have even read where some actors refuse a picture on the street or at a restaurant while at these cons, because they have an "exclusive" deal.

So even though some of the soap events are a little high, it's unfortunately not out of the range these days. If people don't pay the prices to go, they will change. It's only because enough people ARE willing these prices are what they are. At least for right now, you still do get some interaction with the actors at soap events.

Oh and although many of the people at the sci-fi conventions now make their living from these events, many of the top priced people are still working. But there are tons of fans who are willing to fork out the money, so these events go on. When they started years ago, you paid a fee to get in, and the celebs were more than happy to talk. The change started when some cons started to pay the actors only a base fee, and the celeb made the real money on their own popularity.

It really all comes down to supply and demand. I'll be curious to see how many people attend this event and if they feel it was worth the money. When at least some money goes to charity it does help ease the pain a little.

Anonymous said...

anon at 6:29, I agree with you about SBu. he is all about the money. even promoting the juice monavie to his fans.

kdmask said...

I was being sensitive to the people going to the events,I am not saying anyone that wants to go shouldn't. I was just opening a discussion about pricing. My point was this: A LOT of people that would LOVE TO go, can't--- by a long, long way. It just leaves a bad taste.

Anonymous said...

Anon at 928

Not just that juice...SBu can't be bothered to tweet a Hello or friendly tweet, unless it is promoting something that he will make money on. 95% of his tweets are about that...buy my CD, buy my cookbook...buy tickets to Port Chuck, or whatever PA he has planned. I am not saying he has never tweeted just to be nice...but that is rare...or about 5% of his tweets. At least it has been that way in the past. I stopped following him for that reason, so I am not sure what he is doing now.

LW got pretty bad too, pushing her wine all the time...buy my wine and I will invite you to a wine party on tweeter etc...I stopped following her too for the same reason.

I don't like when these soap actors take advantage of their fans, by trying to make money off of them. Ingo R was not like this. He tweeted pix from all over the world just to be nice and friendly. Becky H's husband is always tweeting pix of their family. There are some that are just NICE to fans, and don't seem like they are looking for a payoff.

NoSoup said...

I have been to several fan events over the years. Some I have paid for and some were free or an admission cost.

I went to a free one at a state fair that NLG, Bradford and JPL attended. There was very few fans in attendance and it was not well organized which was actually the best part because the actors were candied. Sadly, fair did not make enough money it is sounded like the actors might not have been paid for their time....

I went to another charity event that was $150 dollars. This include over 10 stars from various soaps, sit down dinner, dancing and a band, open bar! and everyone was dress up. This was an incredible deal. Stars were out and about the entire evening. I looked for the same deal the following year, but I think they caught on, because it was much more expensive and many more restrictions.

I have attended a few of the comedy/meet and greet events that ranged from $45-$90..... I enjoyed seeing the actors in person and listening to experiences from set, etc. Best part for me though, is the friends you go with and the other fans you meet.... I probably would not repeat seeing anyone for that kind of money. Once is enough.

Now a set tour as you mentioned would be fantastic. I would definitely like to do that and would pay up. It would be have to be a stop in a family vacation as it would probably cost a lot for the tour and flight and over night expenses.

Anonymous said...

Ok so I am one of those folks who has been to the sci- fi conventions. First off the admission price is maybe $40 for 3 days or $15 for one day. For that price you can meet and talk to all of the actors at the con for free. There are loads of film screenings, special panels where all the actors from a certain show discuss it for 45 mins and then take questions, gaming events, costume events, parades, concerts etc etc. All free for the price of admission. Some actors won't allow pictures but most do. Formal pics cost between $20 to $70 for 1 actor or more if you want a couple together. Autographs cost roughly the same. Most of these actors make their living off these cons and pay all of their own travel expenses. Except for notables like Leonard Nimoy these people are not currently working and are not wealthy. They actually need the money. Most fans go to the con, talk to dozens of actors, buy a comic book and a soda and go home. So unless you choose to buy pictures or autographs you get a great days worth of entertainment for $15. I have not been to any soap events so don't want to join the argument but felt I needed to set the record straight about sci-fi cons. Live long and prosper...