Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Aw shucks, thanks

I "liked" the website on Facebook and voila, won $500 in printing products which I know I can put to good use.'s blog writer, Monica Friedman, subsequently called me, conducted a very engaging interview and published this story. Let's hear it for the arts, education and the power of a beautiful ticket in the hand!

Contest Winner: Solange De Santis

Solange De Santis published Life on the Line in 2000.
Journalist and Theater Critic Praises the Power of Arts and Education
Let it not be said that Solange De Santis fears getting her hands dirty, plunging into a story, or taking a risk for a cause in which she believes. She may be a writer by trade, but her love of knowledge and education marks her as a modern Renaissance woman. An accomplished journalist and theater critic who once took a job to assembling cars in a doomed GM factory in order to learn, first-hand, the plight of the blue-collar worker, she is also a dedicated educational booster, volunteering her time to support the arts in schools.
“The arts are my passion,” De Santis explains. In addition to directing and running sound for community and school theater, “I play the piano, I sing in the choir at St. Thomas Episcopal Church in Mamaroneck, I’m a judge in the Theatre Startsplaywriting competition in Ontario, Canada, I am doing communications consulting for Westchester’s St. Thomas Orchestra.” Plus, she finds time to help organize dances and other arts-related activities atHommocks Middle School in Mamaroneck, New York.
Arts, Communication, Education, and Tickets
A firm believer in the power of education, De Santis attributes her accomplishments to formal schooling: “I explored the worlds of literature and drama in my undergraduate study at Barnard College and journalism at Columbia’s Graduate School of Journalism. Much later in life, I went to NYU for an M.A. in educational theater, graduating in May 2011.” Communication, she believes, is the key to success, and the arts are the most profound way to communicate. True communication, she feels, “leads to understanding and that means a lot less conflict in the world.”
In the past, De Santis has used to produce tickets for Hommocks’ 8thgrade dance and “found the service to be fairly easy to use…and very reasonably priced.” Rather than choosing “small, flimsy raffle tickets you can get for $11 in a roll,” which had been used in the past, she “was able to design a much larger ticket with a raffle stub and heavier-weight cardboard with wording customized for our event” for about $80. She found the numbering made “management of the ticket list and the raffle…a breeze. It was an excellent solution.”
Solange De Santis, 2007, with award for Best Sound Design from the Association of Community Theaters-Central Ontario
$500 in Free Printing and a Warm Emotional Glow
Having recently won $500 in free printing from, De Santis is exploring her options and will most likely dedicate the prize to St. Thomas Orchestra’s May concert. Since the orchestra does “not yet have a digital purchase option,” she is also considering Ticket River’s online box office as a solution for Internet sales. She likes the idea of “total solutions,” offered in Event Kits “such as the tickets-poster-flyer package in the classical music section” and finds the service “so useful for schools or amateur/community organizations with limited budgets and people like myself who are not necessarily ticket management professionals.”
In spreading a love of art and music, ticketing options become an important part of creating access. De Santis recognizes how all the details come together create results, and sees that, “the easier the process, the better you can focus on the event itself and [the] better your relations are with your audience.” To her, “a ticket is an essential print product that is part of the overall communications environment.” It’s not merely a way to count heads or push an audience through a gate, but rather, a “little representation of your event,” that can be held in the hand. “Ticket stubs are often saved as souvenirs, pasted into scrapbooks…even in the digital age,” she reminds us, and, “A nice-looking ticket creates a warm emotional glow.”