That’s where your logic ends and mine begins. To produce a handful of well-heeled subscribers, you must cultivate them from vast fields of single-ticket buyers. This is not an inexpensive proposition. And yet, the people who buy single tickets pay full price for their seats. They can also be guided into deeper forms of engagement that don’t involve handouts or entitlements. Which means they’re extremely valuable to you and your organization. Treat them well.
In what other industry is this phrase so persistently used? It’s one thing when teacher hands out ribbons for every little non-achievement; it’s entirely another matter when you have to award them to yourself.
Of course you’re proud. Who wouldn’t be? But patrons don’t hand over their hard-earned cash so you can feel sniffy. This is their experience, not yours. Write it that way.
Same thing with your venue. Program into the right space and people will be gushing about your full house, not tut-tutting poor ticket sales and lamenting the future of your art.