Apr. 26 | A Day in the Life: Box Office Manager

“Enjoy!” It is greeting and sincere wish offered by our Box Office Manager to every patron coming through our doors.  The acts may change, the seasons may come and go, but some things in the life of the Weinberg Center remain unchanged.  For 14 seasons, Jef Cliber has been welcoming patrons to “the Jewel of Frederick” with that same greeting. Take a peek as Jef offers us a glimpse of his typical Tuesday.

8am: My day begins with a flurry of activity. Lights go on, a walk through the theater is done, and then to the basement I descend. The first order of business is running of the reports. This is a daily process, where I run the report for the previous day.  I then proceed with multi-colored highlighters and tackle every single transaction that took place the day before. Depending upon the volume of business done the day before, this process can be either very lengthy or very short.  An average deposit can take about an hour to process fully.

9am: Reconciliation and recording the deposit. This process involves cross-referencing a lot of numbers. If the numbers match between what my 2 reports say, I can move on to reconciling my credit cards. The volume of the business the day before really matters here, since the credit card totals have to match exactly. If not, it becomes a detective case where I must find the error and solve the issue. Who says accounting isn’t fun?

10am: It is time to open the Box Office for business! By this point in the day, I know exactly what is going on today business-wise. Phone messages have been received, emails have been answered, and it is time to update my staff. I usually try to let them know specifics: “Someone is coming in to pay for a large group sale this afternoon, and here is the reservation number.” That kind of communication goes a long way, preparing everyone so that we are all on the same page.

10:30am: There is always a larger question that needs to be answered in email. Written communication is essential when dealing with financial matters. Today, I need to make sure that a discrepancy between my records and those of my ticketing system are reconciled with the City’s finance department.

11am: The mail has arrived, so it’s time for me to process any payments that we have received for group sales. Upstairs to the Box Office I go!  Today I have several of these payments from our education-based performances, the smARTS Series. I have a lot of invoices to pull up, verify the amount owed in the system corresponds to the payment I am receiving, and then process. Back to the Box Office I go to drop off these payments.

12pm:  Lunchtime is here. I have deposits, mail, and inter-office envelopes to deliver to City Hall, and I am fortunate in that I combine a work function with a visit with my lovely wife! So I walk by my wife’s work and she joins me for the trip.

12:30pm: It’s time to process the financial settlements for any events that happened over the weekend. While I am compiling all of this information into a simple and easy-to-read format, I have to wait for more information to come back to me. While that’s going on, I return a phone call to customer regarding a Will Call question, and then speak with an upcoming renter about their performance to verify I have all the pieces I need to build their show into the ticketing system.

1pm: I have moved on to building new performances into the ticketing system. I have done this for enough years now that I have a mental checklist in my head of the steps I need to take. I finish out the build, review it, review one more time, and then I am ready to activate the performances. I update my sales reports to reflect the added shows.

2pm: It’s now time to process my settlements. Most of the work is already done from earlier, but now I have to add in the appropriate charges. I verify final numbers, and then it will be time to print and mail it. On my way, I double check with the Box Office staff to see if a board member has stopped by to pick up an envelope.

2:30pm: I verify some unpaid invoices for an upcoming show and process some other ticket requests from corporate sponsors and upcoming performances, specifically Artist seats. Artists who perform are generally allowed a certain number of tickets, per their contract.

3:30pm: Finally, I have the time to work on my upcoming month’s schedule for the Box Office. I have 4 employees and I must incorporate their time off requests with our upcoming events. I also take the time to see what other events are happening in our community to see if there is anything else I need to know about. Before 4:30 arrives, I have looked at 7 different calendars. I’m always walking out of my office to ask John, Ashley, or Rebecca questions regarding other events – or to look at their calendars if they aren’t at their desks.

4:30pm: The day is over already? Tuesdays are always busy, even in slower months. I’m off to pick up my wife and head to the grocery store, and then the pet store – my 2 furry boys at home need their favorite food!

See you at the theater!

Apr. 18 | Backstage Sneak Peek: Green Room

You’re settled into your seat here at the Weinberg Center for the Arts. The lights are flashing one final time… the show is about to begin! Finally, the house lights dim, the stage lights come up and – suddenly, as if by magic – the artist you’ve been waiting to see appears on stage.

It may look like magic, but that artist didn’t simply appear out of thin air – they came from the green room!

Most theaters feature a green room, a place where artists can relax while waiting to appear on stage. They are usually equipped with comfy places to sit, mirrors for last-minute costume and makeup checks, and perhaps a few snacks or drinks.

The Weinberg’s green room, like most, isn’t actually painted green. In fact, legend has it that this “holding pen” gets its name from being the final place a performer can relieve their stomach of stage fright before heading onstage.

Our green room is a bit more special than most, thanks to a fun feature many guests aren’t aware even exists. The Weinberg’s green room walls boast a cavalcade of signatures from many of the famous faces that have graced our stage over the years – musicians, comedians, speakers, and more, from Joan Baez to George Takei and beyond.

Can you spot the signature of noted singer/songwriter Rosanne Cash in the shot below?

Just this past fall, audience favorite David Sedaris graced our stage once more… wearing a very special clothing choice, which he memorialized on the green room wall!

There’s plenty more where that came from! You don’t have to be a performer to see our green room up close and personal – you can check it out on a free backstage tour. We hope you’ll visit us and find your favorite signature on the wall… so mark your calendar today!

See you at the theater!


Apr. 11 | Instagram Recap: Going Behind the Scenes with The Quebe Sisters

Have you ever attended a Tivoli Discovery Series performance? These pay-what-you-want events feature emerging artists of varying genres whose names you’ll want to learn before they make it big. Our most recent Tivoli Discovery Series performers, The Quebe Sisters, were no exception! Before they showed us their fiddle prowess, they took over our Instagram to give fans a peek into backstage life. Check out some of our favorite shots that the talented trio shared:

Though it was an early morning, the sisters were all smiles.

The view from our stage looking out is almost as impressive as the view from the audience!

Primping and prepping are all in a day’s work when you’re a performer.

Our friends at Music & Arts visited for a pre-show video shoot. Keep an eye out for a Quebe Sisters interview in the near future!

And last but not least, thanks to the folks at Sass Magazine for snapping this great shot of the performance. We love Frederick, too!

Isn’t the backstage life glamorous? If you missed The Quebe Sisters, you have one more chance to catch a pay-what-you-want Tivoli Discovery Series performance this season. And we’d love to see your Weinberg pics, too! Don’t forget to tag them with #WeinbergCenter so we can see the great memories you’ve shared. See you at the theater!


Apr. 6 | A Day in the Life: Manager of Marketing

Ever wondered what it’s like behind the curtain? Though every day is different, Manager of Marketing Ashley Birdsell Lewis takes us behind the scenes to learn what a typical Wednesday looks like in her shoes. Whether it’s putting new shows on sale, creating an ad, pitching a story to the press, or even just chatting with upcoming artists, there’s never a dull moment when marketing our world-class live events.

8am: I arrive at the WFMD 930 offices for our weekly guest spot on Bob Miller’s morning show. Every Wednesday morning, I get to pretend I’m a local radio personality. It’s always fun to tell listeners about what events are coming up at the Weinberg… plus, some early morning banter with Bob always wakes me up!

8:45am: I arrive at the Weinberg Center and start my morning routine, the highlight of which is of course coffee. I feel so lucky to work in such a beautiful, historic building! Our Box Office Manager Jef always arrives before anyone else, so we chat for a few minutes about how ticket sales are going for this weekend’s shows.

9:15am: After I’m done checking my email, I check our social media channels for any notifications, comments, or messages. It’s great seeing positive feedback on our Facebook page, geo-tagged images from patron’s visits, or even excited 140-character tweets! Generating conversation is a highlight of my job as Manager of Marketing.

9:30am: I delve into today’s big project: research and prepping for next season’s announcement and on-sale! Though we won’t announce our 2017-2018 season until the first week of August, now is the time for me to begin thinking about the campaign launch. I spend the next few hours creating a timeline and to-do list, researching possible brochure sizes and designs, and gathering assets (photos, videos, and bios) for next season’s artists. The brochure will need to go to print a full three weeks before it’s due to hit mailboxes, so this impacts my timeline significantly. Planning for the new season is one of my favorite parts of my job, as I get to combine both creative and strategic lines of thinking… plus, I always enjoy working on something fresh and new.

12:30pm: Lunchtime! If I haven’t packed something, I’ll generally head to Crabapple’s for a sandwich or Rex’s for a salad. Usually I’m joined by our Manager of Development, Rebecca. It’s always nice to get out of the office and stroll through downtown Frederick, especially now that spring has decided to make an appearance.

1pm: It’s time to head to our monthly Frederick Speaker Series meeting, where we’ll discuss this year’s record-breaking season, and potential speakers for 2018. We always strive to present a balanced lineup, with speakers covering a wide range of interests and timely topics. It seems early to be talking about next season, but speakers’ schedules often book up months in advance! I jot down some notes about how we can best relay the Speaker Series announcement into our Weinberg season announcement.

3pm: I arrive back at the office and catch up on any emails I missed while I was at the meeting. I have a reply from the Quebe Sisters’ agent, who’s helping me arrange a pre-show video shoot with Music and Arts, as well as a day-of Instagram takeover. That means we’ll give them the password to our account and have them post on behalf of the Weinberg before, during, and after their performance. I always enjoy finding new and interesting ways to give audiences a behind-the-scenes scoop.

4pm: Rebecca and I take our daily tea break! It’s quick stop at Voila to grab my favorite – Chocolate Strawberry iced tea. We’re here so often that Mary Jean, Alex, and their whole team know our names.

4:30pm: Our digital advertising representative calls me to discuss the metrics from our most recent campaign. We’ve recently expanded this segment of our marketing plan to great success, and it’s so gratifying to hear about our efforts working as promised! I like to think of marketing as connecting the right audience member with the right show, rather than forcing a hard sell. Our rep agrees, and we make a few notes to better optimize the next digital campaign.

5pm: Tonight’s artist is sound-checking on stage, so I wrap up what I’m doing at my desk and head upstairs for a few minutes to watch. There’s nothing quite like the thrill of live music. After getting permission from their manager, I take a few photos and videos to post on our social media channels and blog. And with that, I head home for some gym time, dinner, Netflix, and crocheting before doing the whole thing again tomorrow!

See you at the theater!

Mar. 20 | Why Intern at the Weinberg Center?

It’s a little-known fact that much of what we do could not be accomplished without the help of our stellar interns. But as any former or current intern will tell you, it’s not just about what they can offer the Weinberg — it’s also crucial that we provide them with a place to learn, grow, and explore. If you’re a college student interested in arts administration (a fancy term for the management of theatrical and cultural institutions), an internship here at the Weinberg Center may be the perfect next step for you!

Internships are offered on a seasonal basis (summer, fall, or spring) and are flexible to fit your schedule and level of experience. We are currently accepting applications for summer interns! As an arts marketing and development intern, you’ll learn to connect with audiences in a whole new way. Whether helping to put new shows on sale, communicating with members and donors about their many benefits, or helping spark conversation on our social media channels, interns are an integral part of our administrative team. But don’t just take it from us… check out what some of our former interns have to say:

“Working at the Weinberg is a great introduction to the wider world of theater. It’s a safe space to become familiar with the processes or to become more fluent in them. The introduction I received to the marketing side of entertainment was a light shined on opportunity. I am grateful for that light and the skills I learned while at the Weinberg.”
–Savannah Taylor

“I loved being an intern at the Weinberg. Everyone welcomed me in with open arms and wanted to help me succeed. They were open-minded to teach me what I wanted to learn, and helped me build my confidence when it came to working in a new environment. I loved every minute of it.”
–Jessica Rota

“I am so grateful for my time at the Weinberg. As a Performing Arts Administration major, having a hands-on experience was crucial for me. I learned a great deal about Marketing and Development in a way that would have been difficult to grasp through college coursework alone. The concepts I learned at Weinberg Center for the Arts will be useful tools as I continue to strive towards my personal career goals in the realm of performing arts administration.”
–Valerie Blaemire

“Interning at the Weinberg Center is a priceless and rewarding experience. The knowledge and experience I have gained has made me confident moving on to a full-time job. The Weinberg is truly the gem of Frederick and I’m honored I got to work with and learn from the people who make it shine.”
–Bonnie Monnier

“Interning at the Weinberg Center not only allowed me to utilize the skills I had learned through coursework in a practical way, but it enhanced and tightened my abilities. Getting the opportunity to learn more about how a venue operates was truly unique. Everyone at the Weinberg is incredibly helpful and kind as well. It felt great to know that I contributed to this wonderful theater!”
–Rosalyn Smaldone

Think you’ve got what it takes? If you’re a college student looking for your next step and the words “flexible,” “detail-oriented,” and “enthusiastic” all describe you, then we encourage you to apply today! See you at the theater!

Please note that we do not offer internships backstage or in our technical department.

Mar. 13 | Dino Data for the Whole Family

Please note that due to inclement weather, this performance has been rescheduled for Saturday, May 13. All tickets for the original date will be honored. Learn more.

Get ready for the ultimate playdate… 65 million years in the making! This Wednesday, Erth’s Dinosaur Zoo Live is set to storm the stage as part of our annual Family Series. We know audience members of all ages (that includes you, parents and grandparents!) love these fascinating prehistoric creatures… so let’s test your knowledge before you see their puppet counterparts!

Which popular dinosaur’s name means “three-horned face?”

Triceratops (try-ser-ra-tops) is a very large and distinctive dinosaur because of the three sharp horns on its head… so its name is quite literal. Erth’s Dinosaur Zoo Live! showcases a baby and an adult triceratops!

Which herbivore adapted to better see in the dark?

The leaellynasaura (lee-el-in-a-saw-rah) was roughly the size of a turkey, but with long legs and a long tail. They had unusually large eye sockets which likely adapted to be able to see in the long winter darkness of the Antarctic. Their name means “Leaellyn’s Lizard.”

What dino was the largest animal ever to roam on land?

Titanosaurs (tie-tan-oh-sawr) grew to sizes far in excess of their earlier relatives; hence they are named after the mythological Titans, who were gods of ancient Greece. The largest known titanosaur grew up to 115 feet in length. It may be tough to fit the Titanosaur puppet in the door of our theater!

What “dinosaur” isn’t actually a dinosaur?

Plesiosaurs (plee-see-uh-sawr) were actually not dinosaurs, they were sauropterygiams which were among the largest living sea creatures. They had large bodies, long slender necks and four flippers. Though they didn’t actually chew, they had long, very sharp teeth which they used to snatch fish. You’ll see three of them in Erth’s Dinosaur Zoo Live!

Which dino favorite may have actually had feathers?

Tyranosaurus (tie-ran-oh-sawr-us) or T-rex is probably the most well-known dinosaur. It was first discovered by Barnum Vrown in 1902 and was one of the first giant meat-eating dinosaurs. Its name means “Tyrant Lizard King.”

Which mega-insect pre-dated the dinosaurs?

Meganeura Dragonflies (meg-a-NEW-ra) pre-dated the dinosaurs and is one of the largest insects ever to have lived on the planet. They could have a 15-foot wingspan and had swiveling multi-faceted eyes like headlamps which were quick to spot movement and food. You’ll see one mechanical and two static Meganeura Dragonflies on Wednesday!

Want to meet the dinos for yourself? Meet-and-greet tickets are still available, so grab yours now if you want to roar with a T-Rex or stomp around with a Triceratops. See you at the theater!

Dinosaur facts courtesy of Erth's Dinosaur Zoo Live, http://dinosaurzoolive.us/#creatures.

Mar. 9 | Experiencing the Backstage Magic

Have you heard that the Weinberg Center has started offering backstage tours to the general public? It’s easy to join us for a prescheduled tour or make your own private tour appointment. We know you love the Weinberg’s fantastic shows and events, but here’s a few reasons why you should experience the backstage magic for yourself:

You can check out the birds-eye view from the projection booth.

Old film reels, canisters, and projection equipment, oh my! Our vintage projection booth is usually off- limits to the general public, but if you’re a participant in one of our backstage tours, you get a first-hand look!

You’ll learn fun trivia and local theatrical lore that’s sure to impress.

Ever wonder why the ticket booth is outside of the theater? Or why there’s sometimes a bare bulb standing on the Weinberg stage? A backstage tour will answer all your questions – and some you didn’t even know you had!

You can hang out where the stars do.

Did you know that a lot of the artists who have graced the Weinberg stage – like George Takei, Joan Baez, and David Sedaris – have signed the walls of the Weinberg greenroom? You can spot these signatures and many more when you take a backstage tour.

…and you’ll find out why it’s called a greenroom in the first place!

We know you’re wondering why!

You’ll have a great time.

Our tour guides are longtime volunteers with great stories to tell about their own experiences at the Weinberg Center. They’re passionate about the “Jewel of Frederick” – and it’s infectious!

Tours are available on Tuesday, April 4 and Tuesday, May 9 at 2 pm and are free of charge. More tours will be added during the summer months. Private tours are available pending guide and theater availability. Please contact Rebecca O’Leary at (301) 600-2870 or roleary@cityoffrederick.com for more information. See you at the theater!


Mar. 2 | Top 5 Things Happening this Month

We can’t believe how fast 2017 is flying by! Luckily, we’ve got plenty of shows and events on our stage this month that are sure to put a smile on your face and a spring in your step. Check out our top five picks for March:

1 | Nearly 10 million YouTube views can’t be wrong.

Pay-what-you-want and discover your new favorite artist! Soulful crooner Matt Andersen deftly explores both the personal and political, with a commanding stage presence to boot. March 2 at 7:30pm

2 | Physical dexterity meets bad-boy clowning!

Bring the whole family and experience the unpredictable thrills, side-splitting laughs, and daredevil stunts of two talented physical comedians. It doesn’t get any sillier – or more impressive! – than this. March 3 at 7:00pm

3 | Frederick Reads is back… and free!

Beloved author Bill Bryson (“A Walk in the Woods,” “Notes from a Small Island,” “A Short History of Nearly Everything,” and many more) takes the stage for a free reading, Q&A, and book signing. March 5 at 7:30pm

4 | Travel back to the prehistoric era.

You probably weren’t alive when dinos roamed the earth (it was 65 million years ago, after all), but that doesn’t mean you can’t meet these jaw-dropping creatures for yourself! Audiences of all ages won’t believe their eyes as life-size dinosaurs chomp, roar, and stomp all over the Weinberg stage. March 15 at 7:00pm

5 | The Frederick Speaker Series continues.

Loved the 2015 Will Smith film ConcussionMeet the real-life Dr. Bennet Omalu as he takes the stage for the next installment of the Frederick Speaker Series, exploring his groundbreaking discovery of chronic brain damage in NFL athletes. March 23 at 7:30pm

See you at the theater!


Feb. 21 | 5 Fast Facts about Elizabeth Smart

The fifth annual Frederick Speaker Series continues tomorrow with abduction survivor, bestselling author, and motivational speaker Elizabeth Smart. Though she was taken from her Salt Lake City home at the age of 14, Smart has become an advocate for change related to child abduction, recovery programs, and national legislation. We’ve compiled a few facts about Smart to prep you before she takes the stage.

Fact 1: Smart found that her family was the ultimate motivator.

Smart was held captive for nine grueling months before ultimately being returned to her family in March 2003. As she mentioned in an interview with Frederick Magazine, Smart said it would have been “so easy to have given up, but I always came back to the idea that despite all that had been taken away from me, I still had a family that loved me and I knew that would never change.”

Fact 2: She is the founder of The Elizabeth Smart Foundation.

Smart’s experience inspired her to create a nonprofit foundation, which seeks to prevent future crimes against children. The foundation partners with organizations like radKIDS, which trains children in personal safety education.

Fact 3: Smart is a graduate of Brigham Young University, where she studied music and harp performance.

She began playing harp at the age of 5, and by the time she reached middle school, she was frequently performing at local weddings, funerals, and recitals – including opening for the Utah Symphony.

Fact 4: She’s written one bestselling book… and is working on a second.

Smart’s memoir “My Story” was released in October 2013 and explores her abduction and time spent held captive in detail. She told Frederick Magazine her upcoming book will tell the stories of “people well-known and not so well-known” who have faced their own difficulties.

Fact 5: Her advocacy has taken her from the courtroom to the stage, the screen, and beyond.

Elizabeth Smart has become a champion for the Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force, a multi-jurisdictional group that helps state and local law enforcement agencies respond to cybercrimes against kids. She’s also brought her insight to the small screen, as a regular contributor for ABC News.

Want to meet Smart for yourself? Meet-and-greet tickets are still available… and all of the proceeds benefit children’s programming at Frederick County Public Libraries. See you at the theater!

Quotes by Elizabeth Smart in her recent Frederick Magazine interview, 2/1/17, "A Survivor's Story."

Feb. 13 | Last-Minute Ideas for Your Valentine

Valentine’s Day may be just around the corner, but have no fear! We’ve rounded up a few last-minute gift ideas that are sure to make even Cupid jealous. The best part? There’s no worrying about whether that tie will fit or if she already owns that perfume… a night spent at the theater is one-size-fits-all fun for both of you!

Idea 1: Skip the hubbub of the 14th and make the 15th into a night to remember! Folk icon Arlo Guthrie is set to take the stage for a musical road trip through time… so sit back and reminisce with your Valentine as you enjoy the sound that shaped a generation.

Idea 2: Plan multiple date nights at once! Tickets to one show are great… but how about two or three shows? Build your own subscription and give the gift of multiple evenings out on the town. (Our suggestion? Gear up for St. Patty’s Day early with three unique Celtic performances: We Banjo 3, Teelin Irish Dance Company, and Scythian!)

Idea 3: Make your Valentine’s dreams come true with a meet-and-greet. Why just see a show when you can meet your favorite speaker… or even a dinosaur? Snag a meet-and-greet ticket to take your theatergoing experience to the next level.

Idea 4: Take advantage of our special dining offers and visit one of our restaurant partners before or after your next show. Whether your significant other loves Italian, Greek, or just a good ol’ fashioned burger, you’re sure to impress when you turn your Weinberg Center date night into dinner-and-a-show.

Idea 5: Still unsure what to give your sweetie? Weinberg Center gift certificates are the perfect solution! They come in multiple denominations and never expire… plus, they can be used towards any performance of the recipient’s choice. (Fingers crossed that you’ll be the lucky guest when they exchange that gift certificate for tickets!)

If you’re in need of further suggestions, our friendly Box Office staff has got you covered. Simply give us a call and let us know what events you and your sweetie usually enjoy, and we’re happy to make a suggestion or two. Valentine’s Day just got easier! See you at the theater!