Applause Wanted
The Chew (Photo: Donna Svennevik/ABC)

Be Part of the Studio Audience

With so many shows taping in New York, it's hard to figure out exactly how to get tickets to your favorites. Our comprehensive guide has everything you need to know to become part of a live studio audience.

Are you crazy for Colbert? Love Letterman? Can’t get enough Kelly Ripa or the women of The View? Every day, TV shows across the city need live studio audiences. And with a little savvy, planning and patience, you can take advantage of this little-exploited source of free fun — and see your television heroes in the flesh.

Every show has its own policy on how to request tickets, ranging from sending a text message to signing up online weeks or months in advance. Some shows have standby tickets that are handed out the day of the taping. Depending on which show you’re looking to see, standby tickets can be easy — or nearly impossible — to procure. Keep in mind that shows purposely overbook to ensure a full audience when the camera scans the room.

The best way to make sure you get in? Request tickets far in advance and show up early. For a recent taping of The Colbert Report (with tickets in advance), the email confirmation said to show up no later than 5:45 pm, but even after getting there at 4:15 pm, there were 60 people ahead of us in line (the first of them showed up closer to 3 pm). Of course, Colbert is one of the hottest tickets in town, and every show is different. Use the info below as a rough guide for arrival times, and always err on side of caution.

The only cost to you is a little time and effort. And the experience of being part of a live studio audience is absolutely worth it.

 

The Daily Show with Jon Stewart (Photo: Martin Crook)

‘The Daily Show with Jon Stewart’ (Photo: Martin Crook)

The Daily Show with Jon Stewart
733 Eleventh Ave., between 51st and 52nd Sts.

As you might imagine, getting in to see the king of fake news isn’t easy — the best way to do it is to make the show’s website your best friend and check in on its ticketing calendar regularly.

Getting tickets Visit the show’s site and if none are available you can sign up with your email address to be notified when they are.
How far in advance? 2-6 weeks
Standby ticket availability Nearly impossible. There are no tickets distributed by showing up early; the only way to get last-minute tickets is by visiting the show’s website and getting very lucky (and being very, very quick with your typing).
Schedule  Mon­­-Thu year-round at 5:45pm. Guests with confirmed tickets should arrive no later than 4pm, but 3pm is probably a better bet.
Restrictions Audience members must be 18 or older, and a government-issued ID is required to enter the studio.

 

The Colbert Report (Photo: Comedy Central)

‘The Colbert Report’ (Photo: Comedy Central)

The Colbert Report
513 W. 54th St., between 10th and 11th Avenues

Tickets to The Colbert Report  are tough to come by, but with a little luck and patience, you’ll get there eventually. For dedicated citizens of the Colbert Nation, it wouldn’t be a pilgrimage without a few obstacles.

Getting tickets Visit the show’s site to find a calendar of screening dates and request tickets. If you see any available, request them immediately – they go quickly. Like with the Daily Show, If none are available you can sign up with your email address to be notified when they are.
How far in advance? 4-6 weeks
Standby ticket availability Extremely rare but not impossible. Sign up for same-day standby tickets in front of the studio at 3:45pm. The line sometimes forms as early as noon, but tickets — (big) if available — are distributed starting at 4pm.
Schedule Mon-Thu at 7:30pm, but confirmed ticket holders must be in line no later than 5:45pm. It’s recommended to arrive even earlier (4:30pm should be sufficient) to ensure entry.
Restrictions Audience members must be 18 or older, and a government-issued ID is required to enter the studio.

 

Kenan Thompson, Bobby Moynihan, Aidy Bryant on Saturday Night Live (Photo: Dana Edelson/NBC)

Kenan Thompson, Bobby Moynihan and Aidy Bryant on ‘Saturday Night Live’ (Photo: Dana Edelson/NBC)

Saturday Night Live
30 Rockefeller Center

The American classic has been serving up live sketch-comedy since 1975 and has probably minted more stars than any other television show in history. It’s also the Moby Dick of live studio audience tickets.

Getting tickets Saturday Night Live tickets are handed out via lottery — and you can only enter in August by sending an email to snltickets@nbcuni.com. Include all of your information but don’t list a specific date. In the event you’re chosen, you’ll be notified, in which case you may want to check outside for flying pigs.
How far in advance? 1-9 months
Standby ticket availability Unlikely but not impossible. But it is a commitment. Standby tickets are handed out at 7am on the 49th St. side of 30 Rockefeller Plaza on Saturday mornings for the 8pm dress rehearsal or the 11:30pm live broadcast on a first-come, first-served basis.
Schedule Saturdays, 8pm dress rehearsal, 11:30pm live performance. Arrive no later than 7:15pm for the dress rehearsal and 10:45pm for the live show.
Restrictions Audience members must be at least 16 years old and photo ID is required.

 

Late Show with David Letterman (Photo: Jeffrey R. Staab/CBS)

‘Late Show with David Letterman’ (Photo: Jeffrey R. Staab/CBS)

Late Show with David Letterman
1697 Broadway, between 53rd and 54th streets

The gap-toothed former weatherman is still going strong after all these years, and the live show at the Ed Sullivan Theater remains one of the best in town (and also one of the coldest — Dave likes to keep the studio frosty).

Getting tickets Submit an online request using the show’s ticket form, which asks for your information and a preferred date. You’ll also need to correctly answer a random trivia question about the show. Or you can visit the theater in person Monday through-Thursday from 9:30am to noon or Saturday and Sunday from 10am to 6pm. But don’t line up before 9am or you’ll be deemed ineligible to receive tickets, which seems appropriately grumpy. Either way you request tickets, you’ll be notified if you’ve been chosen — sometimes four weeks in advance, sometimes the same day of the show.
How far in advance? 4-6 weeks
Standby ticket availability Fair. Standby tickets are available by calling 212-247-6497 at 11am on the day of the taping. Your name will be taken and you’ll be placed on a waiting list in the order in which you call. The phone lines are open every day for 30–60 minutes or until the stand-by slots are filled.
Schedule Varies. Ticket holders will be informed, but generally shows tape Monday at 4:30 and 7pm, Tuesday and Wednesday at 5:30pm and Thursday at 4:30pm.
Restrictions Audience members must be at least 18 years old, and a government-issued ID is required for admission.

 

Be Part of the Studio Audience

‘The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon’ (Photo: Theo Wargo/Getty Images for The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon)

The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon
30 Rockefeller Plaza 

After more than 40 years in Los Angeles, The Tonight Show is finally back in New York with Jimmy Fallon at the helm. The former Late Night host got the big promotion thanks to the 2014 retirement of long-timer Jay Leno.

Getting tickets Sign up for free tickets at showclix or on Facebook where a calendar displays available dates.
How far in advance? About 4-6 weeks
Standby ticket availability Fair. Arrive by 9 am on the morning of the taping at the “NBC Studios” marquee on the 49th Street side of 30 Rockefeller Plaza. Only one ticket is issued per person and it doesn’t guarantee admission. Jimmy also rehearses his monologue in front of a studio audience; free tickets can be reserved here. You can also check Jimmy’s Twitter (@FallonTonight) for last-minute tickets.
Schedule The Tonight Show tapes on Monday through Friday at 5 pm. Plan to arrive no later than 3:45. Call the ticket hotline (212-664-3056) with any questions about the taping.
Restrictions No one under the age of 16 will be admitted. Photo ID with proof of age is required to claim tickets. Due to limited tickets, groups of more than four are not allowed, and individuals are allowed to attend a taping once every six months.

 

Be Part of the Studio Audience

‘Late Night with Seth Meyers’ (Photo: Peter Kramer/NBC/Getty Images)

Late Night with Seth Meyers
30 Rockefeller Plaza 

Former Saturday Night Live Weekend Update co-anchor and head-writer Seth Meyers took over the coveted Late Night vacancyfrom fellow SNL alum Jimmy Fallon, who left to host the Tonight Show.

Getting Tickets For free tickets, call 212-664-3056 (ticket lines are open Monday–Friday, 9am–5pm Eastern Time).
How far in advance? About 4-6 weeks
Standby availability Fair. Arrive by 9am the morning of the taping at the NBC Studios marquee (on the 49th Street side of 30 Rockefeller Plaza). Only one ticket is issued per person and it does not guarantee admission. Seth also rehearses his monologue in front of a studio audience; free tickets are distributed day-of at 1pm at the NBC Experience Store also located at 30 Rockefeller Center. You can also check Seth’s Twitter (@LateNightSeth) for updates on last-minute tickets.
Schedule Late Night tapes on Monday through Friday at 6:30pm. Arrive no later than 5pm for admission.
Restrictions No one under the age of 16 will be admitted. Photo ID with proof of age is required to claim tickets. Due to limited tickets, groups of more than four are not allowed, and individuals are allowed to attend a taping once every six months.

 

Today (Photo: NBC)

‘Today’ (Photo: NBC)

Today
49th St. and Rockefeller Center

With Matt Lauer, Savannah Guthrie and of course, Al Roker, the Today show is consistently the highest-rated morning show in television, except for when Good Morning America beats it.

Getting tickets Just show up — no tickets are necessary. That said, even though the show starts at 7am, crowds start lining up as early as 4 or 5am (security guards report there’s already a substantial crowd when they arrive at 6am). The southeast corner of 49th St. and Rockefeller Center is the prime spot for potentially getting your 15 seconds of fame behind the broadcasters. Goofy signs are optional.
Schedule Mon-Fri 7am-11am
Restrictions None that don’t already apply to standing for hours in a public space packed with hundreds of people.

 

Good Morning America (Photo: Donna Svennevik/ABC)

‘Good Morning America’ (Photo: Donna Svennevik/ABC)

Good Morning America
W. 44th St. at Broadway

Simply show up to get in on the broadcast of one of the longest running and most popular daily morning news shows.

Getting tickets None are necessary — just show up at the corner of W. 44th St. and Broadway. But if you sign up online, you can get a tour of the studio after the broadcast ends.
Schedule Mon­-Fri, 7am-9am. Crowds usually start to gather as early as 6am.
Restrictions Bring a photo ID for security clearance. Signs are welcome but they shouldn’t include website addresses or product endorsements.

 

Live with Kelly and Michael (Photo: David Russell/Disney ABC)

‘Live with Kelly and Michael’ (Photo: David Russell/Disney ABC)

Live with Kelly & Michael
W. 67th at Columbus Ave.

Kelly Ripa has come a long way since her days playing a troubled teen on One Life to Live. And now she’s proven that she can carry Live without a Regis.

Getting tickets Fill out the online form – tickets are made available one month at a time, about a month in advance. Even so, there can be up to a 12-month wait for tickets. You can also mail a postcard or regular-sized envelope with your name, address, phone number, email address and a list of dates (as many as possible) to “LIVE with Kelly and Michael” Tickets, Ansonia Station, P.O.Box 230-777, New York NY 10023-077.
How far in advance? 6-8 weeks
Standby ticket availability Fair. Go to the studio (W. 67th at Columbus Ave.) as early as 7am for a standby number. After the ticket holders are seated, the standby line is seated on a first-come, first-served basis.
Schedule Live tapes Mon­-Fri at 9am. Ticket holders should plan to be at the studio by 8am at the latest.
Restrictions A parent must accompany any children under the age of 18; kids under 10 aren’t allowed.

 

The View (Photo: Donna Svennevik/ABC)

‘The View’ (Photo: Donna Svennevik/ABC)

The View
320 W. 66th St.

The gals — Whoopi Goldberg, Jenny McCarthy, Sherri Shepherd and Barbara Walters  – accompanied by a rotating roster of celebrity guests, keep this daytime show in high demand.

Getting tickets Visit the show’s online form and register for an account, then fill out the simple ticket request. You’ll be notified three to four weeks prior to the date if your ticket request is approved. But it’s a very long wait.
How far in advance? A whopping 24-30 months
Standby ticket availability Fair. The View‘s audience team distributes standby tickets numerically on a first-come, first-served basis. Ticket numbers are issued Mon-Thu at 8am sharp outside the studio, but the lines start at 6am (or earlier). Standby tickets do not guarantee admission.
Schedule The show airs live Mon­-Thu at 11am. If you get tickets, you’ll also get information on what time to show up.
Restrictions All audience members must be 16 years old to enter.

 

Rachael Ray (Photo: Disney ABC)

‘Rachael Ray’ (Photo: Disney ABC)

Rachael Ray
221 W. 26th St., between Seventh and Eighth Avenues

In addition to recipes and culinary segments, Rachael Ray offers celebrity interviews, musical performances and Oprah-like features.

Getting tickets Fill out the online form — you won’t be able to ask for specific dates, but if your request is granted you’ll be contacted by a show staffer with available dates and times, and you can choose from those.
How far in advance? 2-6 months
Standby ticket availability Fair. Visit the studio to get a standby voucher at 10:15am for the morning taping or 2:15pm for the afternoon taping. A standby voucher does not guarantee a ticket to the show, but your chances are decent.
Schedule The show typically tapes Tue-Thu at 11:30am and 3:30pm. Arrive for the morning show no later than 10am (aim for 9am) and 2:15pm (aim for 1pm) for the afternoon show. On certain days, the show tapes three episodes in one sitting, so audience members should be aware that unless they agree to stay for the entire duration of taping their entry may be denied.
Restrictions The show has a dress code (details included in your ticket confirmation) — if you don’t follow it, you can be denied entry. Audience members must also be at least 16 years old and present a government-issued ID for entry.

 

The Chew (Photo: Donna Svennevik/ABC)

‘The Chew’ (Photo: Donna Svennevik/ABC)

The Chew
30 W. 67th St., between Columbus Ave. and Central Park West

Inspired by The ViewThe Chew is centered around food-related lifestyle topics.

Getting tickets Register online at abc.com, then go to the show’s online form to request tickets.
How far in advance? 2-6 weeks
Standby ticket availability Very good. Pick up a standby number from a Chew staffer between 7:30am and 8am, Mon-Thu, at the audience entrance (30 W. 67th St.)
Schedule The Chew is taped Tues­-Thu from 9am to 12:15pm. Confirmed ticket holders must arrive at the studio no later than 8am, though 7am is ideal to ensure entry (entry is first-come, first-served).
Restrictions Audience members must be at least 14 years old. All minors are required to have a parent or guardian sign a studio release prior to entry.

 

Katie (Photo: Ida Mae Astute/Disney ABC)

‘Katie’ (Photo: Ida Mae Astute/Disney ABC)

Katie
30 W. 67th St.

A relatively new addition to the NYC talk-show world, Katie brings veteran journalist Katie Couric into a daytime environment in which she also leverages her experience as a news anchor.

Getting tickets Visit the show’s site to request
How far in advance? Typically available just a few days before taping.
Standby ticket availability Very good. Standby tickets are available at 30 W. 67th St. starting around 10am Mon-Fri, though arriving at 9am will increase your chances.
Schedule The show typically tapes Mon-Fri at noon, but ticket holders should show up at least 90 minutes early.
Restrictions A valid government ID is required for admission, and you must be at least 16 to attend (minors must attend with an adult).

 

Wendy Williams (Photo: Karl Giant for The Wendy Williams Show)

‘The Wendy Williams Show’ (Photo: Karl Giant for The Wendy Williams Show)

The Wendy Williams Show
221 W. 26th St., between Seventh and Eight Avenues

A former radio DJ who became famous for getting into spats with musicians (including rappers Q-Tip and P. Diddy), Wendy is now a “shock jockette” on daytime television.

Getting tickets Visit the show’s site
How far in advance? 2-6 weeks
Standby ticket availability Very good. Arrive at 7:30am for the 10am taping (Mon-Thu) or by 11am for the 1:30pm taping (Thu only).
Schedule Wendy tapes live Mon­-Thu at 10am with a second show Thu at 1:30pm.  Ticket holders should arrive no later than 8am for the 10am tapings and 11:30am for the 1:30pm taping.
Restrictions Audience members must present a government-issued ID and be at least 18 years old.

The Dr Oz Show (Photo: Sony Pictures Television)

‘The Dr Oz Show’ (Photo: Sony Pictures Television)

The Dr. Oz Show
320 W 66th St. and West End Avenue

Doctor-to-the-stars (most notably, Oprah Winfrey) Dr. Mehmet Oz discusses health issues, sometimes ones you wish he wouldn’t (including up-close views of the digestive system).

Getting tickets Fill out the form on the show’s site and you will be notified via email at least two weeks in advance if your ticket request is accepted.
How far in advance? 3-5 weeks
Standby ticket availability Fair. Standby tickets are available starting at 8:40am and 1:40pm.
Schedule During the season, Dr. Oz tapes twice a day at 10am and 3pm on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Fridays. Confirmed ticket holders should arrive at least 90 minutes early to ensure entry.
Restrictions Audience members must be 18 or older to attend, and a photo ID is required. There is a recommended dress code, the details of which are included in ticket confirmation emails.

 

Who Wants To Be A Millionaire (Photo: ABC)

‘Who Wants To Be A Millionaire’ (Photo: ABC)

Who Wants to Be a Millionaire with Cedric the Entertainer
105 E 106th St. at Park Avenue

Popular comedian Cedric the Entertainer hosts the syndicated daytime version of the popular game show.

Getting tickets When tickets are available, which isn’t very frequently, they can be reserved online.
How far in advance? 1-4 months
Standby ticket availability Poor. Standby tickets aren’t always available but when they are, potential audience members can be put on a standby list. Arrive no later than 9am for the 10:30am taping or 1pm for the 2:30pm taping.
Schedule Tapings are generally Tues-Thurs at 10:30am and 2:30om.
Restrictions Audience members must be at least 18 years old.

 

Inside the Actors Studio (Photo: Anthony Behar/Bravo)

‘Inside the Actors Studio’ (Photo: Anthony Behar/Bravo)

Inside the Actors Studio
3 Spruce St., between Park Row and Gold St.

Originally a class session for Pace University MFA students, Inside the Actors Studio has taken on a life of its own.

Getting tickets These are closed events, but there is the possibility for public standby, and you can sign up via an online form to receive notifications.
How far in advance? Shows are scheduled irregularly, so wait times can be anywhere from one week to several months.
Standby ticket availability Good. A general public standby line is available for every taping. Line up outside 3 Spruce St. between Park Row and Gold St. at least two hours before showtime. IAS claims to have a high percentage rate of standby admissions.
Schedule Visit the Pace University website above for upcoming tapings or join the email list to be notified when an event is scheduled.
Restrictions You must be 18 years or older to attend.

 

Huckabee (Photo: Fox)

‘Huckabee’ (Photo: Fox)

Huckabee
133 W. 47th St., between Sixth and Seventh Avenues

Former Arkansas governor and one-time Republican presidential hopeful Mike Huckabee hosts a show that combines daytime-TV and cable-news talking-head formats.

Getting tickets Call 877-225-8587 or email hucktix@foxnews.com;  include the number of seats you need as well as your contact information.
How far in advance? 2-3 weeks
Standby ticket availability Good, but you’ll need to figure out whether they’re filming that day — show up around 5pm and ask a staffer about your chances.
Schedule Varies. For more info, visit the show’s site.
Restrictions Government ID is required for entry, and all guests must be at least 18 years old.

 

The Bill Cunningham Show

‘The Bill Cunningham Show’

The Bill Cunningham Show
Hotel Pennsylvania Studio, 33rd St. btwn Sixth and Seventh Aves.

Conservative commentator Bill Cunningham brings his right-of-center perspective to a traditional tabloid-style talk show on The CW that seeks to resolve conflicts between guests.

Getting tickets Call 1-888-710-8425 or visit the show’s site.
How far in advance? 1-2 weeks
Standby ticket availability: Excellent.
Schedule Thursdays and Fridays, year round.
Restrictions You must be at least 18 years old to sit in the audience.

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