Blumenthal warns of bogus tickets

Officials at Blumenthal Performing Arts Center are warning customers that counterfeit tickets are being sold for next season’s Duke Energy Broadway Lights Series.

In an email sent to customers over the weekend, Blumenthal officials said online brokers are “advertising seats they do not have.”

Blumenthal has not assigned seats of printed tickets for individual shows, and arts center officials say it is not possible for anyone to be re-selling tickets for shows that have just been announced. Among the shows affected are “Wicked,” “Lion King” and “War Horse.”

Blumenthal officials say the fraudulent online brokers are advertising balcony seats for as much as $166, even though those tickets eventually will be available for as little as $20 from Blumenthal.

In the email, Blumenthal officials said the fraudulent sites are deceptive, because they use the “Blumenthal” name, or the names of the arts center’s theaters, in the web addresses.

“We do not cooperate with any broker or outside agency,” Tom Gabbard, Blumenthal’s president, wrote in the CEO.

The arts center urged the public to avoid using Google or other search engines to find the Blumenthal website, since, Gabbard said, the fraudulent sites pay to be listed in the search results.

The legitimate sites are www.blumenthalarts.org, or www.carolinatix.org.

“Unfortunately, the law provides us with few options to protect theater fans,” Gabbard wrote.

Prospective patrons are urged to call Blumenthal at 704-372-1000.