Project Description

Memories

the man pushing theatre, kicking and screaming, into cyberspace.”

Founded as ShowCall in 1989, evolved to the Worldwide Entertainment Network in April 1993 then formally established as BuyBroadway Online Inc. (www.BuyBroadway.com; AOL keyword: Broadway; MSN keyword: Broadway) in December 1996 and finally to Theatre.com Inc. in 1999 (launched at the Minskoff Theatre on Broadway with members of various Broadway casts).   I was Founder and CEO, eventually turned into a public company in 1999 and was sold to the Broadway Television Network in 2000.  Over the decade as a New York-based theatrical Internet marketing company, I was as an evangelist, fortune teller, advisor, educator and negotiator, I personally oversaw the development of online ticketing, Broadway websites and theatrical organizations coming online.

Described by Variety Magazine as a “marketing powerhouse“, theatre.com was the single largest online theatre community in the world.

From buying Broadway tickets and souvenirs, providing in-depth show listings, exploring interactive show study guides, watching video clips, reading up-to-date industry news, viewing pictures, sending message to Broadway cast’s or even licensing a musical, theatre.com offered it all in a single, easy-to-use interface to theatregoers across North America and globally.

Affectionately dubbed the “Macy’s of Theatre Souvenirs” by The Mining Co — with 4,000 theatrical products for sale, it was the “Super Site of Broadway“.

Its comprehensive Broadway, Off-Broadway, national touring and regional content was also available through America Online (AOL Keyword: Broadway), Digital City network, MSN (MSN keyword: Broadway) and CompuServe’s Arts & Entertainment Channel, including include show synopses, performance schedules & times, production photographs, seating charts and facility information.

BroadwayNow, its consumer news service headed by Managing Editor, Robert Viagas, included daily reader opinion polls, quizzes and columns from renowned theatre writers, including Ken Mandelbaum.  Dedicated regional staff based in two dozen regions, from London to LaJolla, Minneapolis to Miami and everywhere in between supplied news and local listings.   Together with AvantGo, Theatre.com’s full site offerings were available to handheld PC users worldwide (the pre-cursor to smartphones).

It’s 82,530 “Circle Club” members received late-breaking news, special ticket offers, contests and special event invitations.   Operated by New York-based Theatre.com Inc. (formally BuyBroadway Online, Inc).

A member of the League of American Theatres and Producers, Toby had been leading the industry into cyberspace since its establishment in 1989 by designing, hosting and promoting the official web sites for the vast majority of Broadway and Off-Broadway productions, national tours and regional shows as well as theatrical industry organizations.

Broadway Show sites (partial)

Broadway Organizations sites (partial)