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FAQs and policies
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Accessibility services tickets
The theatre accommodates individuals with special needs requests through our call centre, which may be reached at 613-580-2700.
The theatre does not allow animals or pets, with the exception of service animals such as guide dogs. A service animal is any guide dog, signal dog, or other animal individually trained to provide assistance to a person with a disability.
At a minimum, based upon availability, you will be permitted to purchase tickets for you and one guest beside you. You may also purchase tickets based upon availability for additional guests in close proximity to our wheelchair sections.
There are two elevators at the Shenkman Arts Centre, one on the north side of the facility and another on the south side of the facility.
Hearing assistance is provided as a courtesy and is free of charge. We require the user's name and phone number with a credit card or car keys as security for return of the system. The system at Shenkman Arts Centre is a FM Transmitter (216 Mhz). The headphones work as a normal stereo headset and attach to a small handheld radio. The FM system connects to microphones off stage. These can be accessed at Guest Services on the second level.
If you are a wheelchair user and obtain non-accessible tickets please call our Box Office at 613-580-2700 in order to be relocated, whenever possible, to a designated wheelchair location. We encourage you to notify our staff when purchasing tickets, so that we may better assist you in ensuring the proper seating.
If you have a temporary disability or injury and you have already purchased tickets to an event, please call our Box Office at 613-580-2700 so we may make the necessary arrangements for you to attend the event in a comfortable and enjoyable manner whenever possible. When calling, please have the event, date, section, row, and seat available.
TTY to voice
Patrons who are hard of hearing, speech or hearing impaired are advised to dial 711 (TTY to voice) to contact a Bell Relay operator. Voice users, please call 1-800-855-0511 (voice to TTY). There is no charge associated with this service for local calls.
For individuals who have limited mobility, we can provide a wheelchair to transport guests from our Main Lobby to your seats. Upon arriving at the theatre, please ask a staff member for assistance. Please be aware that our staff will not remain with the patron during the event, nor will they allow the guest to remain in the wheelchair for the duration of the event if the guest has not reserved a wheelchair seat.
For your convenience there is a bank machine available in the Lower Lobby. If you experience any issues or difficulties with the machine, please contact the number listed on the machine.
Baby change facilities
The Centre provides a baby-changing table in the Lower Lobby restrooms.
Available for every show, these seats are made of durable plastic and can make the theatre experience more enjoyable for adults and children. A limited number of seats are available.
Coat Check services are available for a nominal charge for most events. Please note that service availability is dependent on the weather. The Centre is not responsible for lost or stolen items.
If you are looking for a snack at an event, please stop by our vending machines to purchase candy, soda, and bottled water. At most events, you will be able to purchase water, pop, beer and wine at our bar. Food is not permitted in the seating area. Drinks (including alcohol) are permitted in the seating area.
Lost and found
Please contact Guest Services at 613-580-2787 to inquire about the possible recovery of any lost items. If you realize you have lost an item while still at the event, please speak to any staff member for assistance.
Ample free parking is available at Shenkman Arts Centre. View our parking map.
Shenkman Arts Centre is committed to providing a safe and enjoyable atmosphere. Any guest in need of assistance during an event should seek a staff member or stop by Guest Services.
Shenkman Arts Centre does not provide a stroller check. However we will try to make accommodations for you. Please ask any of our ushers for assistance. Please note that Shenkman Arts Centre is not responsible for any damaged, lost or stolen strollers or other items.
Shenkman Arts Centre does not provide a walker check. However we can try to make accommodations for you. Please ask any of our ushers for assistance. Please note that Shenkman Arts Centre is not responsible for any damaged, lost or stolen walkers or other items.
The ticket prices listed on this website include the full ticket price, applicable taxes, processing fees, and a capital renewal fund fee. Ticket delivery fees are charged at time of purchase on the ticketing website.
Collection of information
Collection Notice: Personal information is collected pursuant to s. 10(1) of the Municipal Act, 2001, S.O. 2001, c.25, and will be used for the purposes of communicating pertinent event details, and promotions, by only the City of Ottawa and professional presenting programming partners. We do not reveal specific information about users or other personally identifiable data to unaffiliated third parties for their independent use, except if required to do so by law.
The centre promotes all-in pricing which includes:
- Ticket price
- Box office processing fee
- Capital renewal fund fee
Some shows offer discounted ticket prices for children, students and seniors. Pricing is decided by the presenter. Refer to each show description for discounts – they will be listed in the ticket prices for that event.
Tickets for events at the theatre are sold on a non-refundable and non-exchangeable basis.
Tickets may be picked up at Guest Services (second level) at Shenkman Arts Centre. Please bring valid photo ID, the credit card used to purchase the tickets with and your confirmation number.
If you have lost your tickets or they have been stolen before the event takes place, please contact our Box Office at 613-580-2787.
The seating capacity of Harold Shenkman Hall is approximately 500; however, this capacity does change depending on the requirements of the event. The Richcraft Theatre’s capacity varies depending on the event, but can seat up to 150 people.
Where to sit?
Follow this link for a seating map of our Harold Shenkman Hall. For most events specific seats may be selected from the seat map online. When ordering tickets over the phone or in person we will try our best to seat you in a requested area whenever possible.
For safety and as a courtesy to other ticketholders, please do not sit or stand in the aisles. Aisles should be kept clear at all times.
For most events at the theatre, alcoholic beverages are available for purchase. Our staff is trained in the provincial Smart Serve Training program for responsible alcohol service. All guests appearing to be under the age of 30 may be required to show ID to purchase alcohol. Guests are not permitted to bring outside alcohol into the centre, and may not leave the premises with alcohol purchased from the centre. Alcohol purchased at our bar is permitted in the theatres. Management reserves the right to refuse the sale of alcohol to any guest.
For concert events, the policy on photography is at the discretion of the artist. For family events cameras will be permitted, however we ask that you please refrain from taking photos during performances as this may be distracting not only to the performers, but your fellow patrons as well. Video cameras and recorders are strictly prohibited. This policy will be enforced.
Cell phones and pagers
Cell phones and pagers must be set to silent or vibrate mode. Please refrain from texting while in the theatre unless the performer has specified otherwise.
Children and babes-in-arms
All patrons entering the theatre must have a ticket. At shows designated for children 6 years old or younger, a complimentary ticket is available for babes-in-arms. Babes-in-arms are children 12 months of age or younger who will not occupy an additional seat. Parents or guardians must pick up these tickets in person from the Box Office on the day of the show only.
For all other shows, tickets must be purchased for all patrons in attendance, regardless of age. Children whose behaviour is hampering the enjoyment of the show by surrounding patrons may be asked, with their parents or guardians, to leave the theatre.
This decision is determined by Ontario Fire Code regulations which state that everyone attending a performance must have an admission ticket and an assigned seat. This policy is in line with industry standards across Canada. This measure is taken to ensure the approved seating capacity of the auditorium is not exceeded and for the safety of all guests.
Disturbance of other patrons
Please be considerate to other patrons. Any guest who interferes with the enjoyment of another individual during an event is subject to removal from the building. Theatre staff and volunteers have the right to refuse entrance or ask someone to leave.
Door opening times
Doors for events at the theatre open a half-hour prior to event start time.
The Theatre does not have an official dress code. When you attend, you will likely see people wearing anything from jeans and T-shirts to formal wear. If you are concerned about what to wear to the theatre, we recommend that you come in business office or dressy-casual attire; you’ll feel neither over-dressed nor under-dressed.
Emergency contact numbers
The best way to be contacted during an emergency is to set your beeper or cell phone to vibrate. Please be sure to leave your seat location information with your babysitter, as the theatre will not page ticket holders during an event.
Food and drink
Food is not permitted in the auditorium. Bottled water is permitted. For licensed events, alcohol is also permitted.
The theatre rarely cancels or postpones events due to inclement weather. Please be advised that tickets for all events are sold on a non-refundable and non-exchangeable basis. This stipulation is clearly marked on each ticket. Should a decision be made to cancel or postpone an event, this information will be posted, as soon as we receive it, and we will contact all ticket purchasers to advise them of the change. Please continue to check our website and call our main information telephone line for the latest, up-to-the-minute information.
Most performances over 60 minutes in length will include a 15 to 20 minute intermission.
Many events at the theatre have merchandise for sale. Sales are by cash only. There is a bank machine in the lower lobby for your convenience.
Shenkman Art Centre is a scent-free environment. We ask patrons to please refrain from the use and wearing of scented products when attending an event in the centre.
During performances we ask all guests to remain seated for the duration of the performance. Standing may be accepted for certain events (such as concerts) as normal protocol. Guests are permitted to stand in front of their own seat if the majority of the audience is doing the same. Some entertainers will instruct our staff not to ask anyone to sit down during their performance. Standing on seats or any other building structure is not permitted and may result in ejection from the event.