Part of the magic of live theatre is the shared experience — the subtle interplay between performers and audience, and how laughing, crying, “oooing” and “ahhing” binds an audience. It is also important to remember that the actors on stage can see and hear you at the same time you can see and hear them. Be respectful of the actors and your fellow audience members by being attentive and observing the general guidelines below so that everyone can have the best shared experience they can.

  • Arrive early. This allows everyone to be seated and comfortable on time.

  • Leave sufficient time for parking. If you’re not familiar with Merced, check here for parking information and a map ahead of time.

  • Latecomers cannot be seated until there is a break in the performance. Latecomers will be seated at the House Manager’s discretion and may be asked to sit at the rear of the theater until intermission.

  • Let us know about special access needs in advance. Unless all other seats are sold, seats are held aside for those with access needs. Please contact the box office to make arrangements.

  • Turn off your cell phone and any other electronic devices. Ring tones are not the only problem. Light and the motions of texting can distract other patrons and the performers. If you forget and your mobile rings during the performance, turn it off; do not answer. Please check for messages during the intermission. In addition, cell phones can interfere with the wireless technology in use at our theater - we’re pretty sure you don’t want your conversation with your dear Aunt Sadie broadcast over the theater’s PA system!

  • Sit in the seats you have purchased. That makes it easier for everyone else to find their seats. If your view is totally blocked by a tall person in front of you, before the performance begins, ask the usher to help you resolve the issue.

  • Plan for your comfort and not to distract others. Unwrap any candy and get everything out, or put away before the performance begins. Searching through pockets, bags, etc. can be noisier and more distracting than you imagine. If you think they’ll be necessary, bring cough suppressants, lozenges, medications and have them at the ready; unwrap during applause, laughing or, best yet, intermissions.

  • Visit restrooms before the performance begins. Restrooms are in the lobby next to the concessions counter. Unless there is an emergency, plan to stay seated during performances.

  • No Smoking. There is no smoking anywhere in the theater or on any of its premises.


Young children are most welcome at Playhouse Merced! In fact, we have extensive education opportunities for children, and performances geared specifically for them. We believe that live performance can be even more magical and memorable for children than adults. (For more on education opportunities, visit our Education page.)


However, we recommend that children under five years of age do not attend Playhouse Merced performances that are not specifically a production geared towards children.


Every child who attends, regardless of age, must have their own ticket and seat. This includes infants.

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© 2020 Playhouse Merced | 452 W. Main St. • Merced, CA 95340 | (209) 725-8587 boxoffice@playhousemerced.org