NACOGDOCHES, TX (KTRE) - The SFA box office is seeing record breaking numbers after the start of their Summer Stage Festival.
The festival brought in 200 people on the first opening night of Lewis Carroll's 'Alice in Wonderland', and the SFA Theater Department credits the large box office number to the changes they added to the festival.
"This summer in particular the focus is on really trying to entice the community, to come and be a part of the program that they have had in place for several years now," said SFA Theater major, Amy Miller Martin.
The changes seem to be paying off.
"We had the largest opening crowd for any summer production that we have ever seen when we opened Alice in Wonderland last week," said Director of the School of Theater at SFA, Scott Shattuck.
200 tickets on opening night to be exact and the theater program believe part of that is due to the pre show they added to the festival this year.
"It's more of a community event, where it's not necessarily come see theatrical plays, it is that, but in addition to that you can bring your family and have a day out of it, you know, watch bands, buy food," said SFA Theater major, Joshua Wallace.
Not only does the live music and food bring more to the festival, but also helps with the publicity.
"The thing is we are just much more visible from the street. It can be frustrating to be doing all the work to prepare for the shows and go through the entire season and then have people say, 'O did you do anything this summer?'," Shattuck said.
In addition to the pre-show the theater department also decided to show plays that benefit the community.
"To Kill A Mockingbird and Alice In Wonderland are very well know classical pieces of literature, so in that regard I definitely think it's much more catered to the community," Wallace said.
The community seems to be enjoying the choice in shows as well.
"It's been great, the support from the community has been fantastic," Shattuck said.
The Festival will go on for one more week with different shows throughout the week.
To get a full list of show times, go to the SFA Theater Department Summer Stage Festival web site.