Business Overview

Bring all your talents together as the host of a quality restaurant while putting on a fun musical, drama, or dazzling circus show with your own dinner theatre business. Whether you are targeting tourists or neighbors, it's a challenging undertaking that blends business, theater, and food service all under one roof.

Who is this business right for?

For the multi-talented entrepreneur, a dinner theater business feeds your desire to work in a constantly changing landscape as you swap out menus and productions every few months. Your business will serve customers from every walk of life even as you work to bring together stage talent and service staff equally motivated to excel in this unique workplace. However, you should expect to keep a hectic schedule. If you value your nights, weekends, and holidays, this may not be the job for you.

What happens during a typical day at a dinner theatre?

Your dinner theatre business will always be a mix of predictability and surprise. On any given day you and employees of your business will:

  • Hold rehearsals for the upcoming show with actors, musicians, directors and stagehands
  • Prepare a delicious dinner that serves several hundred people at the same time
  • Clean the kitchen, restrooms, dining room/stage and parking lot
  • Source new shows for future production
  • Provide excellent service to all your customers from the moment they arrive to their departure four hours later
  • Maintain a schedule that delivers food on time without interrupting the show
  • Market your theatre to draw new patrons in from surrounding area

What is the target market?

The theatre crowd continues to evolve and you must carefully target your show to match your intended market. Adults over the age of 50 enjoy dramas, traditional musicals and revivals, and many will make attending a show an annual event. The younger generation demands entertainment that connects with the digital age, but are equally ready to pay for a ticket to the latest and greatest experience.

How does a dinner theatre make money?

Tickets sold to hungry patrons looking for entertainment will cover the cost of the meals, staff and talent wages, and operating costs. By situating your dinner theatre in a high-traffic area such as an amusement park or other tourist attraction you will be able to draw in new customers who have not yest seen this season's show.

What is the growth potential for a dinner theatre?

The ability to expand into multiple locations relies heavily upon delivering a new and exciting theatre offering that your customers want to see repeatedly while bringing their friends along. Themes, dazzling special effects, and a high-energy production offer the most hope for success in this area.