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A few years ago, my family and I took a trip to Chicago, and my mother asked me if we could get tickets to the Steve Harvey TV show. We applied and quickly got tickets for a day that worked with our schedule! I thought the process was easy and I soon learned that seeing Steve Harvey in Chicago was easier than most.
Each TV show hosts their tickets online either through their own website or a third party system. Most ways to get tickets are considered a lottery, but the process is pretty simple, however not every TV show is easy to get tickets.
A good number of TV shows are filmed in the Los Angeles and surrounding areas, but some other cities have talk shows including Chicago, New York, and Atlanta. Depending on your travel plans, you should look into being an audience member to your favorite TV show.
Applying for tickets
1. Make a game plan – if you go to Hollywood then you have more of a chance to apply to multiple TV shows at different networks in case you are not picked for your favorite TV show’s lottery.
2. Review all the rules – sometimes you can only apply for lotteries once per household per day. Other times it’s once per email per day. Make sure you read the rules so you don’t get disqualified or worse banned!
3. Make an account – If you need to create an account – do it before the day you have to apply. Not being prepared will cause a lot less stress when a lottery opens!
4. Answer all calls – I usually screen my calls when they come from an unknown number, but one random day when a random number from Burbank called me – it was someone from NBC letting me know that I had won tickets to the Ellen show!
5. Request accessible seats – if you have any type of handicap make sure to apply for the handicap seats – this helps them ensure that there is a seat for you if you have a walker, cane, wheelchair, etc. You can also request seating after you win the free tickets.
Getting on TV
6. Get there early – some tickets tell you what time you are slotted to show up, but others give you open-ended time to show up, I try to show up as early as possible so I can try to get the best seats. (I also bring snacks with me if allowed).
7. Wear bright clothing – most networks ask you to wear certain colors that show well on TV. I love wearing hot pinks because they show up well on TV. When you wear brighter colors, you are usually seated more towards the front.
8. Be animated but act natural – from the time you arrive at the studio until the time you are seated, the staff is analyzing you and seeing if you would look good on camera. Of course, they do not want someone who isn’t smiling and applauding front and center in the audience!
9. Don’t do anything dumb – I’ve said this multiple times but follow directions. If they don’t want you to bring your cell phone, lock it up or leave it behind. If they don’t want you to bring food into the studio eat it or throw it away while you are waiting. Each studio usually have a couple of standby audience members just hoping for someone to not show up or get removed from the studio
10. No Matter What Have Fun – You might get separated from your party (because one of you might have a brighter colored shirt) or you might be way in the back – no matter what if you have fun you have a chance to get on TV!
TV Shows I’ve seen in person
- Steve Harvey (no longer airing) – We applied for tickets through Steve Harvey’s Website and received an answer very quickly. I was separated from my family because of my brightly colored shirt, and I was seen clapping and smiling on TV. We received a Michael Buble CD.
- The Talk – Got tickets quite easily through 1iota.com – just selected which day we wanted to go to and downloaded the tickets. Mom and I sat in accessible seating and my sister was separated out and was in the front row. She was seen clapping and smiling. We got to meet Sheryl Underwood.
- Queen Latifah (no longer airing) – I am so sad that Queen Latifa is no longer airing but this was one of the best shows to visit. We sat in the front row (accessible seating) and were able to shake hands with the Queen.
- Jimmy Kimmel (concert only) – Applied multiple times and put myself on multiple wait lists but was never able to score tickets. I tried as hard so I could to get tickets to Jimmy Kimmel the multiple times I was in Los Angeles, but unfortunately, it was not meant to be! I did score tickets and visited the concert set multiple times; please note – do not bring a large purse to the concert! You must bring only a small wallet or small purse.
- The Price is Right – Signed up on On-Camera-Audience’s website and was able to get early morning tickets for a morning Taping. Since The Price is Right is an all day experience – I would suggest to do the early morning taping over the afternoon taping. They interview every single audience member so come prepared to dazzle the producers! No one from my group was selected to ‘come on down’ we were on the front row! During this time I really stepped up on my Get on TV agenda and because of that I have this awesome clip.
- The Ellen Show – One of the harder shows to get tickets for – I applied for over two years for every month almost every day and finally got tickets in January 2015. A few weeks after my show aired this clip aired and that is me – shaking my money maker! I didn’t realize what I did during the commercial was going to be on TV!
- The Tonight Show – Probably the hardest tickets to get – The Tonight Show only releases tickets on a certain day each month for the next month (so you have to reserve your July tickets in early June). At the end of the show Jimmy Fallon and Nelly came around and gave everyone high fives! You can see me switching spots with my mom so I could give them a high five in this clip.