I understand the folks who wait for a creative work to come out in paperback, to be free on TV, the ones that get the half-price tickets at TKTS near the end of the run. They're cheap, at least when it comes to this particular sort of art.
I understand the audience that waits to read the reviews, that wants to hear from friends and anointed critics before they spend their money. They're careful.
So who comes on opening night? No discounts, no reviews, no warning…
The patrons come. For them, part of the attraction of art is that they don't know in advance if they're going to like it. They come for a simple reason: it feels good to support something because they can, not merely because it's a good value.
And the true fans come. They come because the artist has earned their trust. "If you made it, that's good enough for me," they say. They come because to not come is to not be a true fan, with all that entails.
Opening night is vitally important, of course. The critics come, word of mouth begins, the producers find enthusiasm and the guts to start work on their next play.
I guess the real question is: who would come to your opening? And the follow up is: what would happen after that?