Arts Research Monitor articles, category = Arts attendance & participation

(La fréquentation des institutions muséales en 2016 et 2017, optique culture no 60)

Based on survey responses from 406 Quebec-based heritage organizations, this report focuses on attendance at museums, interpretive centres, and exhibition spaces (excluding artist-run centres). In 2017, total attendance was 15.9 million, which the report notes is a record level that “might be partially attributed to activities associated with Montreal’s 375th anniversary and the 150th anniversary of Canadian Confederation”.

Based on an online survey as well as data from the Canada Revenue Agency, this report summarizes national and provincial data on heritage institutions in 2015.The total revenues of heritage organizations were estimated at $2.53 billion in 2015, a 29% increase from 2011 (figures have not been adjusted for inflation).

Based on data from various American sources including the National Awareness, Attitudes, and Usage Study from IMPACTS Research and Development, this brief research post indicates that “there is a long lead time in peoples’ intent to visit cultural organizations – even for locals”. On the other hand, “the time between a ticket purchase and redemption is very quick”.

This report aims to provide a “nuanced picture of consumers’ preferences and behavior across a broad cross-section of performing arts organizations”, including four in Canada and 54 in the United States. An online survey in August 2017 received 26,996 responses from performing arts ticket buyers.

Every two years, Statistics Canada provides detailed information about not-for-profit and for-profit (producing) organizations in the performing arts. Operating revenues were $2.16 billion for all performing arts groups in 2016. Operating expenses were $1.90 billion, resulting in a collective operating surplus equivalent to 12.0% of revenues. Not-for-profit performing organizations had total operating revenues of $883 million, slightly lower than operating expenses ($889 million), leaving an operating deficit of 0.7%.

Culture Track Canada summarizes survey findings related to Canadian cultural consumers’ engagement and their “attitudes, motivators, and barriers to participation”. A key finding of the survey is that Canadians “are true cultural omnivores”, with at least one-half of cultural consumers participating in activities such as community festivals (73%), food and drink experiences (68%), historic attractions or museums (66%), zoos or aquariums (66%), music festivals (56%), variety or comedy shows (55%), science, innovation, or technology museums (54%), natural history museums (52%), public art (51%), and plays (50%).

This brief report focuses on a few studies related to the social and economic benefits of cultural engagement. The review found that “people benefit in multiple ways when there is a vibrant arts and culture base in their community and that taking part or engaging in arts and cultural activities1 has certain positive effects on individual well-being”.

2013 Arts Facts using CADAC Data

A brief summary accompanies two longer reports that highlight the situation of 49 media arts presenters and 45 production centres “that receive recurring funding from the Media Arts Section of the Canada Council for the Arts”, based on financial and statistical data reported to CADAC (Canadian Arts Data / Données sur les arts au Canada).

This report estimates that 3.5 million Canadians sang in a choir in 2017, or 10% of the country’s population, based on a public survey of 2,000 Canadians. The report also uses the results of the public survey to estimate that “7.8 million Canadian adults (18 or older) attended a choral performance in 2016”, or 28% of the adult population. The report estimates that there are 27,700 choirs in Canada, the majority of which are church choirs (17,500, or 63%).

Primarily based on a survey of over 7,500 Australians 15 and older (as well as similar surveys in 2009 and 2013), this report outlines key data on Australians’ arts participation, recognition of the value of the arts, and attitudes toward the arts. A key finding of the report is that 98% of Australians engaged with the arts in some way in 2016.