Plan Your Visit

Whether it’s your first visit or you are a long-time subscriber, everyone at Hillbarn Theatre & Conservatory is committed to making sure your experience is memorable and engaging. Expect to be greeted with a smile, immersed in the world of a new play or musical and to have a great conversation on the car ride home. To enhance your understanding and enjoyment of the performance, we encourage you to learn a little about the playwright and the period in which the play takes place. Exploring the Hillbarn Theatre & Conservatory website’s show selection page (would like to make an engage &  learn) will provide a wealth of information to help start you on this path.

What Should You Bring?

Rather than stressing the Don’ts of audience behavior (don’t talk, don’t squirm, don’t make noise), we urge you to enjoy the performance and give support to the actors. Here’s what you need:
Full concentration. If you talk during the performance you will disrupt the concentration of everyone around you and also that of the actors on the stage, and you’ll miss whatever is going on at that moment.
Relaxed bodies, ready to laugh and listen and see even the tiniest of details.
Open minds, eager for new experiences and “question-making” rather than “answer-getting.””Willing suspension of disbelief.” You and the actors have an agreement. They will create the imaginary world in which the drama takes place, and you agree to believe/accept the imaginary world that they create.
 
And please remember to turn off all cell phones, pagers, talking wristwatches, so that everyone can enjoy the performance without interruption.
 

What Will You Find?

Theatre tells a story. Theatre has the power to move us emotionally. Theatre conveys ideas through images, sounds, movement, and symbols, as well as words. It is okay to leave the theatre with questions about meaning, with perceptions and ideas that vary from those of your friends, with emotional connections that may have a unique personal impact.

 

Theatre is not TV

Although it may seem obvious, it is important to realize that theatre is a live event. The actors are right there in the same room with the audience, hearing, seeing, and responding to everything that is going on. Inexperienced theatre-goers may assume that the event is similar to television or a movie–that somehow the actors on stage exist in another reality from the audience. You may not be aware of the fact that the actors rely on the audience to help make the play come alive. In addition, you have to stay focused on the action and words because there is no rewind button.

But it is Electric!

The audience feeds concentration, energy and support to the actors. In return, the actors give their own concentration, energy and trust to the audience. The relationship is like an electrical circuit: only when the flow of electricity is connected does the energy flow and the light go on. Contrast that experience with turning on the TV. What happens if you get up for a snack from the kitchen or you start talking to someone in the middle of the show? The TV show goes right on as if nothing has happened, because for the images on the screen, indeed nothing has happened!

Connecting Common Experience

Think about how you feel when you get up in front of the class to give a report, or sing in church, or play a game for cheering fans in the bleachers. This will help you identify with the way actors feel when they perform. Yes, even professional actors who perform for a living get nervous. The actors care about how the audience responds to them and the play.

Patron Services

The theatres, parking, and bathrooms are all fully accessible to persons with disabilities. Refreshments are available in the lobby.

Refreshments
The lobby is open one hour prior to each performance. Patrons may enjoy drinks and light refreshments prior to the show and at intermission. Pre-order your intermission refreshments. Please refrain from bringing food purchases into the theatre.
 
Assisted Listening Devices
Hillbarn Theatre is now equipped with an Assisted Listening Device system to assist those with hearing aids. Sound is transmitted directly from our P.A. system without background noise or interference to better serve our patrons.  
 
 
Parking
Free parking is available in rear of the theatre. Please plan to arrive early. Accessible parking is on the front and north sides, with access to the lobby on both the front and rear entrance.
 
Wheelchair Accommodations
Wheelchair seating is available and must be requested in advance. Please call the box office. 650.349.6411 ext.2
 
Stairs
Hillbarn Theatre has raked seating with limited seating on the ground floor. Please contact the box office if you require specific seating closer to the floor.
 
 

Getting Here

The Hillbarn Theatre Box office is located at 1285 E. Hillsdale Blvd in Foster City

The lobby opens one hour before showtime on show nights.

The Box Office is open 11 am – 3pm Tuesday – Friday. They can be reached at 650.349.6411 ext. 2 or emailed at boxoffice@hillbarntheatre.org

With FREE parking lots both next to and behind the Hillbarn Theatre, you are just steps away from our building.

Various locations in the theater can better accommodate patrons with limited mobility. When possible, arrangements should be made by calling 650-349-6411 ext. 2.

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