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Doin’ the Math on Theatre 29′s Ticket Sales

By   /   March 29, 2014  /   9 Comments

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Twentynine Palms, Ca.,- Now that the tax filings have been posted for your review, let’s look a little closer at Theatre 29′s ticket sales as reported on the documents to see if Gary Daigneault’s claim of “the theatre has out grown this facility,” holds any water


There was $46,765 reported in ticket gross revenue, including the Halloween Haunt. There were 7 plays each with 12 performances, for a total of 84 performances, not counting the Halloween Haunt held during the month of October.

Using the figure of 91 seats means 7,644 seats were offered for that year. Assuming that ALL the revenue came from the theatre performances and removing any Halloween Haunt sales, that would mean the theatre reported a gross revenue of $6.11 per seat offered. 

So it is mathematically impossible they are anywhere close to selling out! 

Looking at it another way, assume that all their ticket sales are spread evenly across children, military, and adults at an average price of $10. General admission is $12, military & senior is $10, and children/students are $8.  That would mean the percentage of seats sold was only 61 percent. 

It is more likely they sell more $12 seats than $8 seats, but this analysis creates the highest % of seats that could be sold.  

Okay, now let’s say all the seats sold at only $8 each, and the gross sales were from seated performances, then the percentage rises to only 76%. 

So why does Gary Daigneault announce they were “completely sold out” on the radio and make statements to the 29 Palms City Council that the theatre has outgrown its facility? >LINK

Perhaps something else has outgrown the facility, but it’s not the attendance. Since ticket prices did not decrease, purchased seats must be falling as indicated in Theatre 29′s tax filings made public by this forum.

 Does Theatre 29 hood-wink local charities with “Opening Night” special fund raising opportunities?

Theatre 29 pitches  different charities to pre-purchase all 91 seats at a bargain price of $8 for a total of $728. The charities can then sell them at their own price as a fundraiser keeping the difference over and above their bargain price of $8. Daigneault has stated this form of generosity allows the theatre to recoup all their up front production costs of the “Opening Night” performance giving  the charities reduced ticket prices to raise money for their own organization while claiming the proceeds of “Opening Night” sales go to charity.

The devil is in the details…

If the average GROSS ticket sales revenue is only $556, then Daigneault makes more money by “giving to charity” when the organizations purchase all the tickets for a cost of $728.

One more thing, if you add the extra “Opening Night” sales revenue to this analysis, the average attendance calculation would drop.

Another sales tool in Theatre 29′s marketing tool box is to pitch the pre-purchase of Season Tickets and “Support the Arts” with recurring donations promoting these as tax deductions because they are a non-profit 501(c)3 in good standing..or, are they?

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About the author

Margo Sturges

Yucca Valley Editor

Note: Margo Sturges has written many articles for Cactus Thorns and is the founder of Citizens4Change.info. Email contact: MargoSturgesYV(at)aol.com "In a time of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act."- George Orwell


  1. Dan OBrien Dan OBrien says:

    The Devil IS in the details….

  2. Wow! You really nailed it with the math.

  3. michaelv michaelv says:

    A comment, there are 29 users on this site right now, why is it that the same few comment? It would be great to see additional input, ideas, whatever it is, even if you think the city is doing okay. The only way for things to happen is to get involved. Instead of just reading a blog and commenting to your family or friends, put it out there, who knows, the more people comment the more may join.

  4. Robert Nelson Robert Nelson says:

    I had to register to be able to respond to MichaelV’s question about why so few people use this forum to get involved in local issues.

    I was registered to comment here on Cactus Thorns years back but I quickly learned how certain persons will use a forum like this to attempt to intimidate you and to bring harm not only to you and your property, but also to those they believed were associated with you in one way or another. I thought it best to avoid getting involved in local issues any further when these people were looking to cause trouble and bring harm to people while some here – knowing full well what they were doing — posted comments clearly meant to encourage those who WOULD do harm others.

    But that was in the past. I don’t see that happening anymore. I remained a regular visitor of Cactus Thorns and find it to be much more informative than the local papers or radio station which tend to serve as PR tools for those politicians and local leaders they can benefit from.

    I recently became interested and involved in local politics and issues again after seeing for myself how unprofessional our Town Manager, his Deputy Town Manager, the Captain of the SBCSD and his Lieutenant could be. I learned how local and county political leaders, justice and law enforcement agencies and many of those whose job it is to SERVE the public were easily irritated and angered by anybody in the public that spoke out with an opinion or simply asked questions.

    Because I dared to say that I was a witness to the arrest of a man who did not commit the crime he was arrested and charged for, and because I dared to ask local leaders and government agencies for help with this issue, I’ve become “one of them.”

    Yep. “ONE OF THEM.”

    That’s what I was called by a staff member of Congressman Cook when I attended a meet and greet for the Congressman here in town. I didn’t just show up at this meet and greet, it was an RSVP event and I let Cook staff member, Dawn Rowe, know I would be attending and she and other staffers were already aware of the issue I wanted to speak with the Congressman about.

    Dawn Rowe was kind enough to try to introduce me to Cook’s District Director, Matt Knox, but he was having none of it. He stood two feet from us and completely ignored us. After some time I told Ms. Rowe that she could leave and I’d wait there for my chance to speak with Mr. Knox. When he realized I was going nowhere, I introduced myself and was met with “I know who you are. You’re one of them and I know what you’re up to.” He then demanded that I show him my cell phone, turn it on and prove to him that I was not recording anything he said to me.

    I asked him “who are ‘them’?” and “what are ‘them’ are up to?” He refused to answer and made it clear that he was not going to speak to somebody that was sitting at the same table with people who were some of “them.” I told him that if that was the problem – who was sitting at the same table as my neighbor and I – that he should know I had never met or spoken to “them” until that very evening.

    Because he refused to speak with me without being rude and nasty and because Congressman Cook visited each and every table to speak with those who attended but avoided the table I was sitting at – because “them” were sitting there, also – I approached Congressman Cook to speak with him about an issue I was concerned about. Mr. Knox saw this and rushed over to end the conversation before it began and again demanded that I turn on my phone and prove to him I was not recording anything.

    To his credit, Congressman Cook did speak with me after first trying to walk away from me.

    When I returned to my table I found my neighbor speaking with Yucca Valley Town Councilmember Dr. Lombardo and 29 Palms City Councilmember Harris. It took only a moment for Councilmember Harris to figure out who I was and to begin calling me a “lying piece of shit” to my face. I didn’t respond at all. I was too shocked to see all those local friends of Congressman Cook watch it happen and apparently think nothing of it. As Councilmember Harris walked away he stopped and turned towards me and screamed out loud in a maniacal wail – “You’re a lying piece of shit!”

    THAT and more – THAT and WORSE – is what you can expect if you dare to get involved in local politics and local issues and you’re not part of the Cook / Mayes / Rowe / Nuaimi / Lombardo / Melland political and social clique.

    Recent incidents have made it very clear to me that they and those they associate with don’t want people who don’t bow down to them and agree with every word they speak and every move they make “involved” in their business … even though it’s the public’s business.

    It’s somewhat amusing to me that, simply by getting involved in my town’s issues and the civil rights case of a man arrested in front of my home – in front of me – for a crime he didn’t commit, I’d be called “one of them.”

    I know who the Cook / Mayes / Rowe / Nuaimi / Lombardo / Melland group and their loyal fans are referring to when they refer to somebody as “one of them.”

    I’m not “one of them” … but I respect and admire “them” a great deal for putting so much time and effort into getting as much information out there as possible for the public to read and consider.

  5. OMG! Thanks for posting this information. Jim Harris is a lame duck. It’s shocking that Harris would speak to anyone in the manner in which he dealt with Mr. Nelson. Nelson is a courage individual, and frankly, I believe that Harris did call Mr. Nelson a “lying piece of shit” to his face…

    and that “As Councilmember Harris walked away he stopped and turned towards me and screamed out loud in a maniacal wail – “You’re a lying piece of shit!” All witnessed by many people

    Does anyone want another four years of Harris?

  6. Dan OBrien Dan OBrien says:

    Well welcome aboard Mr. Nelson.

    You know I don’t know of a single legitimate forum where you do not have to “register.”

    If you do not have to register the editors most so called forums must revue your post… when they review your post they edit your post or worse delete your post.

    Some posts on many sites never get published.

    The local papers inconvenience you by requiring you to register.

    You are registered user number 96,660.

    You are always welcome here.

  7. Robert Nelson Robert Nelson says:

    Hi Dan -

    I don’t mind having to register, not at all. Let me clarify that I was just trying to make the point that michaelv’s invitation to people to get “involved” motivated me to register once again so that I could respond and let him know how things can go for those whose involvement isn’t appreciated by those who are running things in the Morongo Basin at this time.

    I believe – and will often say publicly – that people can get MUCH more news and information here at CACTUS THORNS than they can from KCDZ or the local papers … which I refuse to call “newspapers” as there’s very little news to be found in them.

    I recommend CACTUS THORNS to others often — been doing so since I found your blog — and I appreciate the work you do to give those who want to share information and those who want more information this blog to go to.

  8. Robert Nelson Robert Nelson says:

    I forgot to mention that the Town Council and their attorney allowed Town Manager Mark Nuaimi to use the Town’s official website to slam me and call me a liar. It shows how low Nuaimi and his cowardly cohorts on the Town Staff and Council can go.

    What’s interesting about Mr. Nuaimi’s comments about the incident in front of my home is that he corroborates the statement that I gave the deputy at the time of the incident – that the bike rider did not attempt to run anybody over as he was arrested and charged for doing, but rather moved to avoid us (“In fact, the motorcyclist attempted to drive past the Captain & Lieutenant…” Nuaimi says in the statement.)

    And … anybody who has viewed the photos and videos of the incident (which I made public and available to all law enforcement and justice departments involved) can see the Mr. Nuaimi’s account of the arrest – saying the biker did “… attempt to flee, and then be taken to the ground and arrested” – is not true. That is a complete and total fabrication and Mr. Stueckle, Captain Boswell and Lieutenant Toms KNOW that it is not true. You have to wonder what Nuaimi and Stueckle said in their statements about the incident given to the SBCSD.

    Knowing that our Town Council and their attorney did nothing about this incident involving the Town’s Chief of Police, Town Manager and Deputy Town Manager … and that other county agencies tasked with dealing with this case have refused to consider the evidence … that should scare everybody in Town. We don’t have local Town officials, law enforcement or justice departments that we can count on to be honest and uncorrupt.

    But I guess that’s why we have the Attorney General’s office and the Grand Jury.

    Video and photos of the incident

    Town Manager Update
    August 2, 2013

    Setting The Record Straight – Over the past several months, there has been this legend perpetuated in the community about an incident on Linda Lee involving two representatives from the sheriff’s department, the Deputy Town Manager, and myself. For months now, a resident has chosen to attack the reputation not only of Town staff but two leaders of our police department – Captain Boswell and Lieutenant Toms. For months I have sat silent – I’m done staying silent based upon the most recent entry into this legend. Here is what the neighbor on Linda Lee recently blogged:

    “The five of us, Mr. Nuaimi, Mr. Stueckle, Captain Boswell and Lieutenant Toms were standing together on the side of the road. On the OTHER side of the road a biker dumped his bike … off the side of the road, actually. He was arrested for assault on an officer and the charged with battery on an officer, a more severe crime. In the time since I’ve learned more than I wanted to know about character and integrity of the many people and agencies involved in that case.”

    I can tell you unequivocally that the incident on Linda Lee DID NOT transpire as this blogger is trying to lead the community to believe.

    -This blogger must forget that he actually attempted to insert himself into the enforcement action by initially standing in the middle of the road, directing the motorcyclist to stop.

    -He probably forgets being told by Captain Boswell to kindly remove himself from the road and allow the Captain and Lieutenant to do their jobs.

    -The motorcyclist ignored their instructions to stop – instructions that were being given by the officers standing in the middle of the dirt road. In fact, the motorcyclist attempted to drive past the Captain & Lieutenant only to lose control, attempt to flee, and then be taken to the ground and arrested.

    I can’t tell you why this blogger is intentionally misleading people to believe that this was somehow an improper arrest or that our officers acted inappropriately. I can’t tell you why he (the blogger) claimed to file internal complaints with the sheriff’s department, state attorney general, and others. I can’t tell you why he took this issue to our local congressman and now attacks his integrity as it pertains to this matter. What I can tell you is that our law enforcement professionals took a frequent flier into custody that day on Linda Lee. He had two outstanding bench warrants for his arrest. He plead guilty for his actions and served his time.

    Why this blogger continues to mislead this community is beyond me. But it is clear that this blogger forgets why we were meeting with him in the first place – the blogger was concerned about Off-Highway Vehicle use terrorizing the neighborhood. We had four representatives from the Town meeting with him and when one of the more aggressive OHVers is taken into custody, he (the blogger) complains about that action as well.

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