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Bruce Springsteen’s Broadway Shows Go on Sale Via Ticketmaster ‘Verified Fan’ System

Spencer Platt, Getty Images
Spencer Platt, Getty Images

Bruce Springsteen‘s Broadway residency is expected to be one of the season’s hottest tickets — and Ticketmaster says it’s doing what it can to keep scalpers from buying up the best seats.

As previously reported, Springsteen is booked for an eight-week run at the 960-seat Walter Kerr Theatre on Broadway, where he’s scheduled to perform a special solo show between Oct. 12 and Nov. 26. (Previews open Oct. 3.) Saying it “seemed like the right setting for what I have in mind,” he’s promised an acoustic blend of song and spoken word that “loosely follows the arc of my life and my work.”

Tickets are set to go on sale today at 10AM ET through Ticketmaster’s new Verified Fan system, which the company says utilizes a series of algorithms to determine whether a prospective buyer is more likely to use a ticket or put it on the reseller’s market. According to David Marcus, an executive vice president at the company, the goal is to minimize frustration among the prospective buyers who most desperately want to see Springsteen.

“Verified Fan is about creating an invitation only experience around the on-sale,” said Marcus. “You give your basic information, your name, email address, mobile phone number to Ticketmaster and Ticketmaster applies a bunch of algorithms to that limited data set and it can determine if you’re likely to go to the show, or if you’re likely going to sell your ticket.”

Naturally, one of the best ways to determine whether a buyer is a fan is to dig into their ticket-buying history to see if they’ve gone to a Springsteen show in the past — and as Marcus was quick to point out, Ticketmaster doesn’t have that information for other ticket vendors, so that means the Verified Fan system will benefit those who’ve used their system before.

It’s a bravely high-profile way to try rolling out a new initiative, and Marcus admits the company is acutely aware that Springsteen’s passionate fanbase will be quick to air their grievances if Verified Fan ends up making the purchasing process more complicated — or worse, more difficult for diehards to get their hands on tickets. On the other hand, he’s argued that Springsteen’s deep connection with his fans makes this the perfect opportunity.

“We are acutely aware of the unique history that Bruce has with his fans, the depth of passion his fans have for him and the commitment to him through ticket buying over the last 40 years, we are very sensitive to that,” Marcus added. “There are only 30,000 to 40,000 tickets for sale and we are going to try our best to identify people who are likely going to use these tickets and not resell them. I can’t guarantee that every single passionate tickets buyer from the last 40 years is going to be rewarded with a ticket because the supplies are limited. That’s the reality of it.”

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