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    15 Things To Know If You Want To See A "Saturday Night Live" Taping

    You don't need to wear a diaper.

    1. Going to the taping of a Saturday Night Live episode is one of those really cool things that just seem impossible to do.

    Jemima Skelley / BuzzFeed

    If you're not lucky enough to win tickets through the yearly lottery, fear not: You've still got a shot at getting standby tickets. They give these out in person at the New York City studio at 7 a.m. every Saturday there's a show on. Everyone in the line gets a numbered standby ticket, then returns that evening to see if there's space in the studio.

    2. Sometimes you need to get there early, sometimes not so much.


    When the host/musical guest doesn't have a huge or passionate fanbase, you could probably join the line Friday evening and have a good chance of getting in. Some people have gotten in after getting there at 5 a.m. Saturday.

    But when the musical guest was BTS, fans began lining up Monday at 1 a.m. For Harry Styles, the line started Tuesday. I recently saw an episode with Taylor Swift and was ninth in line when I joined it early Thursday morning.

    3. You don't need to wear a diaper.


    I got a lot of concerned questions about how I was able to go to the bathroom or get food. Guys, this isn't Lord of the Flies. You can leave your spot in line for a little bit, and there are tons of places, like Starbucks and McDonald's, with public restrooms. Someone next to you in line can hold your spot, then you can do the same for them later.

    4. Bring a chair or source some cardboard.

    Jemima Skelley / BuzzFeed

    Sitting on the cold, hard ground for 48 hours is less than ideal. Pick up a cheap camp chair to make your wait a little more comfortable. Some people brought air mattresses and blankets, so feel free to do that if you want to go all out.

    If you want to lie down to sleep but don't have a mattress, in the evening you'll be able to find some clean cardboard waiting to be recycled outside a deli or coffee shop. This'll be a bit warmer and softer than sleeping straight on the concrete.

    5. And bring warm clothes.

    Glow Decor / Getty Images

    Maybe it's because I'm Australian and not great with cold weather, but prepared. It gets COLD at night. It dropped to 45 degrees when I was there in early October. Bring a thermal and a warm jacket, a beanie and gloves. And warm socks!

    6. You'll take all your stuff home and come back before the show.

    Jemima Skelley / BuzzFeed

    So don't worry about bringing along too much. You have 12 hours between getting the tickets and coming back, so you can take everything home, sleep, shower, eat, do whatever. Bring as much crap as you need!

    7. You will make friends.

    Jemima Skelley / BuzzFeed

    When you spend up to 60 hours hanging out on the street with strangers, you'll definitely end up making conversation. The fact that you're both there means you have at least one thing in common, and chatting is a good way to make the time pass quicker.

    8. Get ready for a LOT of questions from strangers...

    random man handed us $100 so we bought pizza for the snl standby line 🤝😤💗

    The queue runs along Sixth Avenue, so there's a lot of foot traffic going by. Literally every four minutes at least, someone would stop to ask why we were lining up. Also, be prepared for a lot of "Wow, I would never do that!!!!!!!!" I guess I'll take that as a compliment...?

    One guy stopped and actually gave us $100 to buy pizza for everyone on line. So at least one good thing came from it!

    9. it might be easier to make a sign.

    Instagram: @nbcsnl / Via

    A couple of people in line made signs to hang up on the barricades, which was a great way to avoid having to repeat the same thing for hours on end. True geniuses.

    10. If it's raining, you could take a gamble and bring a tent to keep dry — but they're technically not allowed.

    Jemima Skelley / BuzzFeed

    Technically, you're not allowed to pitch a tent while waiting in line. But the first day and night I was there, it was pouring rain. Two groups in front of me had tents, and the security guard and cops allowed them to stay up. Once the rain cleared, they had to take the tent down before sunrise. If it looks as if it'll be raining when you're there, it's worth bringing one. Just don't put it up till the street gets quiet around 10 p.m.

    11. As an aside, 5 a.m. is arguably the best time to see Times Square.

    times square at 5am is a dream bc there’s barely any people

    If you find yourself awake at 5 a.m., the SNL queue is only a block from Times Square. It's the best time to visit because it's still dark, so all the signs look amazing — but there are no hordes of tourists.

    12. Figure out whether you want to do dress rehearsal or live show.

    Via Twitter: @tashiebhuiyan

    You can get standby tickets for the rehearsal or the real show itself. It totally varies week to week, but chances are there'll be more open spots for the dress rehearsal. If the host or musical guest brought along a huge entourage and they all got seats for the show, there'll be less room for standby ticket holders.

    When you're getting the standby ticket, you can see how many people in front of you applied for each show. I was ninth in line but second in line for rehearsal tickets.

    13. The dress rehearsal is about 30 minutes longer than the normal show.

    We recorded this week's episode last night and realized that for the third week in a row, FIVE (5) sketches were cut from dress rehearsal! Be sure to listen in this week to find out what they were, and why the dress rehearsal ran 20 minutes over its typical 2 hours! #snl

    You'll see all the same sketches, plus some other ones that don't make it into the live show. The rehearsal audience is used almost like a test audience to see how the jokes land.

    14. And the cast is a lot more chilled out for the rehearsal.


    Colin Jost and Michael Che, the "Weekend Update" hosts, were pretty interactive with the audience while delivering their jokes. The cast laughed a bit more during rehearsal instead of trying not to break character.

    15. It's amazing to watch them put together and break down sets.

    View this video on YouTube


    Arguably one of the best things about watching an SNL show is seeing how it all works behind the scenes. After finishing a sketch, the cast sprints off the stage for a costume/makeup change. A huge crew breaks down the entire set and props in what looks like a very tightly choreographed manner.

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