Papering the House

I went to see a panel on the National Popular Vote and before things started, prominent blogger Rick Hertzberg thanked me for helping to "paper the house." Naturally I thanked him in return, but I had no idea what that means. The good news is that these days it's a Google and we learn that "'Papering the house,'" for example, is a common producers' practice to fill unsold seats. It's done during previews -- to start buzz about a new play, and assure a full house when critics are in attendance -- or when a show is past its prime and ticket sales dip."

So now you know.