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Reviews mixed on Broadway show snacking

Jan. 5, 2007 at 12:11 PM
NEW YORK, Jan. 5 (UPI) -- Relaxed rules at independent theaters and nine houses owned by the Nederlander Organization are ending Broadway's prohibition on snacking during shows.

The Helen Hayes and New Amsterdam theaters have joined Nederlander houses like the Gershwin and Richard Rodgers by relaxing rules on drinks and food items. Nederlander Vice President Jim Boese calls the rule changes "a reflection of changing audience habits," The New York Times reported Friday.

Rosa Hires, general concessions manager for the Hilton Theater, told the paper most audience members seem "delighted" and sales doubled in the last three years.

But not all are pleased. Performer Patti LuPone was on stage when she saw two people wrestling one another for popcorn. LuPone says everyone sitting near them was "distracted."

The Shubert Organization, owner of 17 Broadway theaters, prohibits concessions in the theater area. Chairman Gerald Schoenfeld says it "annoys" patrons.

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