Arts Desk

Book of Mormon Ticket Demand Crashes Kennedy Center Website

If you've tried to access the Kennedy Center's website today, you probably got a notice saying the connection was interrupted. The reason? Mormons. Starting at 10 a.m., ticket sales for The Book of Mormon, the Tony-award winning juggernaut from South Park creators Trey Parker and Matt Stone, opened for Kennedy Center members. So many patrons logged on to snatch up seats, the Kennedy Center's website crashed, sending angry patrons to Twitter and Facebook to complain.

According to an email from press officer John Dow, "the website continues to experience historic demand." Some patrons might be able to load the center's homepage—but it will take a lot of refreshing. Meanwhile, members trying to buy tickets over the phone have encountered long waits; one Facebook user reports he hit redial for more than two hours before getting through. Others describe being on hold for up to an hour.

This isn't the first time the Kennedy Center website has had trouble handling ticket requests for mega-musicals. When tickets went on sale for the touring production of Wicked in 2011, patrons stood in virtual lines almost 1,500 people long. The Kennedy Center has a few days to deal with the problem before the next potential crisis: a presale for American Express cardholders is set to begin March 6. Nonmembers have to wait until March 14 to buy their tickets.

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