How To Send Broadway FanMail (Fanmail faq)
- Who should I send fan mail to?
You can send fan mail to any show on Broadway (or off-Broadway) that you like. You have two main options for places you can send things to:
If you want a Playbill (or anything else) singed by more than one person (like the two leads of a show or the whole cast), send it to the stage manager of the show. To do this, just address your letter to "ATTN: Stage Manager" at the address of the theater where the show is playing.
You can also send fan mail to your favorite actor/actress currently on Broadway. If you want anything personalized or signed by a single person, it is best to send it to them directly. You can also include personal things for the actor, such as a note saying just how much you admire them, a questionnaire for them to fill out, or a picture/drawing you want them to see. To do this, just send your package/letter to the actor at the theater where their show is.
2. What things should I send to the show/actor?
- A letter! This is very important. You can find more information on what to put in the letter in question 4.
- A self-addressed, stamped envelope (SASE). If you want to get anything back from the show/actor include a second envelope in the package/envelope you send to the show. This should be completely ready to send (already filled out with your address and proper postage to get it back to you) so that the actor can just put something inside and send it back to you. Also, make sure that the SASE envelope is big enough to fit a Playbill and whatever else you want them to send back to you! If you do not include a SASE, don't expect to get anything back!
- A playbill, poster, or other item that you already have, but want signed. If you have something special that you want signed, it is totally okay to send it to the person!
- If you are sending fan mail to a specific actor, you can include a questionnaire for them to fill out. You can ask them any question about life in the show, past acting history, dream roles they have, or really anything! Make sure that you don't ask any really personal questions, or they probably won't respond. Also, keep in mind that filling out questionnaires take actors time and they probably have a LOT of fan to answer; try to keep the questionnaires short, maybe 4-5 questions max. I've sent questionnaires to many different actors, and I have only gotten a few completed ones back. It is very common for actors to send signed/personalized Playbills back and ignore the questionnaires, so don't be surprised or offended if this happens to you!
3. What things should I NOT send to the show/actor?
- NEVER include ANY personal information beyond your name, age, and address! In general, remember that even though the person you are sending things to is a celebrity, they are a stranger, and you need to be safe with what you send.
- NEVER send ANY personal items that you really want back! It is okay to send Playbills or other items that you want signed, but keep in mind that a lot of fan mail never receives a response, and things might get lost in the mail. As a general rule, if you can live without something, it is okay to send it. But, if you would be majorly disappointed if you didn't get it back, it is best to just keep it.
4. What should I say in the letter that I send?
You definitely want to keep all fan mail letters that you send out short and sweet, but there is some information that you need to say:
- Make sure that you include some information about yourself. At the very least, you need to include your full name, hometown, and age (especially if you are a teen/kid). You might also want to include some interests (i.e. "I am obsessed with musical theater!") and some basic information about shows you have been in and seen (i.e. "My favorite musicals, besides [the show you are sending this to], are Legally Blonde and Next to Normal.")
- You need to talk about just how much you love the show/actor you are sending the fan mail to. This section probably needs to be at least a few sentences long, and you should include some information specific to the show (i.e. "My favorite song in the show is 'Bend and Snap'!" and "Your voice is amazing and I listen to you sing 'Defying Gravity' on the cast recording constantly!") Keep in mind that you don't really have to love the show/actor, but you want to make it look like you do.
- Make sure that your request for a response is very clear. For instance, it is totally okay to just come right out and ask for a signed Playbill. Make sure that you ask politely and simply! (i.e. "Again, I really love the show and I would love to have a Playbill from it. Would you please send me a cast-signed Playbill? Thank you so much!")
5. Does sending fan mail cost anything?
In most cases, no! You only have to pay for the stamps on your SASE and the postage to get your package/letter to the theater! However, some shows do ask for donations to a charity (BCEFA) if you are requesting a cast-signed Playbill. Some shows do this and some don't. If a show does request donations, they will probably just ask for a $10 check, and shows will never ask for more than $20.
If a show does request donations and you don't send them a check with your original letter, they will most likely just send you a response asking you to resend your letter and include a check. If you want to know if a specific show asks for donations, just ask me on the "Ask Me Anything" page of this website and I will do my best to answer you!
Here's a tip, though: if you are sending a letter to a specific actor in a show, you will RARELY get asked to donate. So, if you want a show Playbill, but you don't have the money to donate, just send fan mail to individual actors, instead of stage managers.