Tuesday 5 May 2009

NI Theatre Sales 51% of Sector

According to The Stage the first ever "audience audit" of ticket sales for arts events in 2008 in Northern Ireland revealed that its theatres generated 51% of ticket income, which was worth £13.3 million.

Live music was in third place (behind film) with more than 255,000 tickets generating £4.1 million at the box office. Though lagging in seventh place, dance events produced the highest average ticket yield of £21.43, a third larger than the sector-wide total.

Conducted by Audiences Northern Ireland, the Arts Council-funded body charged with growing and diversifying arts audiences – the survey involved 22 key arts organisations in the region and is, says chief executive Steven Hadley, "a major development in market intelligence for the arts sector here".

Welcoming the report, arts council chief executive Roisín McDonough said: "Its findings refutes commonly held beliefs that the arts are 'a middle income, middle class interest' and 'centered on Belfast'. In fact, as The Audience Audit demonstrates, the arts engage fully across all areas of society".

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