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Melanie Eskenazi

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Bill Kenny


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Nosing Ahead: Welsh National Opera's ticket tissue triumph (BK)

With Winter setting in, WNO has hit on a novel way of increasing ticket sales on its latest tour of Wales and England. Audiences attending performances of La bohème – Puccini’s tear-jerking masterpiece  – are receiving a free packet of tissues in the post the morning after attending a performance. But they’re no ordinary tissues as WNO’s Marketing Manager Jo Taylor explains: “The main reason so many people love attending opera is the sheer emotional impact they experience at such an event. We’ve undertaken research into this phenomenon and realise that WNO audiences are regularly moved by our productions. So the idea of sending a packet of tissues to each member of an audience - the day after seeing a performance they are still thinking about - has proved particularly effective.”

Audiences in Swansea and Birmingham were the first to put the tissues to the test. In Swansea, WNO trebled its ticket sales for the Company’s revival of Madam Butterfly in April 2007, whilst in Birmingham ticket sales nearly doubled for productions of Madam Butterfly and Carmen, which will also be staged in April.

Each tissue has all the information and booking details for two very special productions in WNO’s forthcoming Spring season printed on them in full colour.
“Just like La bohème, WNO’s Carmen and Madam Butterfly are classic “weepies” in the opera repertoire, Jo Taylor adds, 'so people booking tickets can have their WNO tissues  at the ready when they come to see us next. We wanted to remind people that we’re coming back to their town or city soon – and with two more romantic tear-jerkers.”

“And we’re a nose ahead in advance sales from this time last year. Audiences have really loved receiving the tissues in the post – and have acted on the advice printed on the them. Nobody catches a cold with this particular campaign. And even if they do, the
y have a handy packet of pocket tissues to use, courtesy of WNO!”


Bill Kenny



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Contributors: Marc Bridle (North American Editor), Martin Anderson, Patrick Burnson, Frank Cadenhead, Colin Clarke, Paul Conway, Geoff Diggines, Sarah Dunlop, Evan Dickerson Melanie Eskenazi (London Editor) Robert J Farr, Abigail Frymann, Göran Forsling, Simon Hewitt-Jones, Bruce Hodges,Tim Hodgkinson, Martin Hoyle, Bernard Jacobson, Tristan Jakob-Hoff, Ben Killeen, Bill Kenny (Regional Editor), Ian Lace, Jean Martin, John Leeman, Neil McGowan, Bettina Mara, Robin Mitchell-Boyask, Simon Morgan, Aline Nassif, Anne Ozorio, Ian Pace, John Phillips, Jim Pritchard, John Quinn, Peter Quantrill, Alex Russell, Paul Serotsky, Harvey Steiman, Christopher Thomas, John Warnaby, Hans-Theodor Wolhfahrt, Peter Grahame Woolf (Founder & Emeritus Editor)