The Comedy Central Roast of Steve Hofmeyr is ultimately a made-for-TV event. It will be broadcast on television. Similar to the public who should not be asked to pay to audition for reality TV shows, how models should not be asked to pay a fee to audition, members of a TV studio audience SHOULD NOT be asked and forced to pay exorbitant amounts of money to form a studio audience.
Comedy Central and VIMN Africa is in my opinion massively taking advantage of an uninformed and unsuspecting public who are not aware of the gentleman's agreement and rules as far as TV production in terms of television studio audience use is concerned.
Any TV production - and Comedy Central and VIMN Africa should know better - should be grateful that a people are willing to show up in the first place and be a part of the audience. Several TV shows making use of a live TV audience actually give tickets away for FREE to lure audience members, as well as other incentives like free food at a craft table, or charge a very nominal fee for a sitting audience.
Comedy Central and VIMN Africa has orchestrated a massive rip-off by wanting to charge a massive R350 for what is essential a TV production with which they're supposed to recoup their production cost from sponsorship, advertising and other industry fees. What a disgusting and shocking shame!
Remember that Comedy Central as a TV channel gets paid, remember that the TV production gets paid. Remember that this TV production would happen whether there is an actual studio audience or not. Which begs the question: why want to make money of the studio audience who actually shows up and helps to - as a production element - make the dynamic of your TV show better? If anything, its the studio audience who should be paid instead of having to pay.
This is not a live music performance, theatrical concert or stage production where an artist does it primarily to make money our of a stage run or tour. It's a production originally created for television.
Idols on M-Net, the most high-profile TV show in South Africa filmed locally and making use of a TV studio audience, charges R20 to R40 per person to please be a part of the audience for a recording duration of one hour to an hour and a half. Audience members are able to win prizes and hand-out merchandise tied to the show and are able to meet and greet the Idols contestants.
The massive R350 per ticket per TV studio member for the Comedy Central Roast of Steve Hofmeyr is completely unprecedented, wholly unacceptable, disgusting and frankly beyond shocking.
A TV show should actually be thankful that people are willing to come, attend, and sit through a TV production and give their time for what will ultimately benefit the TV show and the TV channel. Shame on you Comedy Central and VIMN Africa for the blatant money-grabbing exploitation of your TV audience!
I've asked Comedy Central for a response as to why potential studio audience members have to pay R350 for this "privilege".
"The Comedy Central Roast of Steve Hofmeyr is a first for South Africa and a much-anticipated live comedy event and TV show that builds on the heritage of Comedy Central Roasts from the USA," says Alison Reid, VIMN Africa spokesperson.
"The Comedy Central Roast of Steve Hofmeyr is a once-off, never-to-be-repeated event and while most of the tickets to the live event will be reserved for invited guests and competition winners, Comedy Central has responded to overwhelming public demand to release a small number of tickets for sale. The premium price is a simple reflection of the well-known laws of supply and demand," says Comedy Central.
"The ticket price of R350 is in keeping with what consumers pay for other premium events in South Africa. Lady Gaga tour top price tickets are more than double what Comedy Central is asking for the Roast. If people do not want to pay the price we have set, then that is their right and we will be delighted for them to watch the show on Comedy Central on 24 September free of charge (as part of their DStv subscription)."