Rhinegold Publishing

Arts council concerns for future audiences

4:04, 7th October 2011

The arts sector has been warned that it cannot rely on ‘traditional culture vultures’ to make up their future audiences.

Concerns have been raised about the future of theatre audiences, as Arts Council England update their audience profiling document, Arts Audiences – Insight. The two categories which were identified as ‘highly engaged’ were ‘traditional culture vultures’ and ‘urban arts eclectic’.

Responding to the findings, director of public engagement Philip Cave said: ‘It is quite difficult to see how you can sustain an arts sector simply by going for those top two segments, certainly in the future. We have to reach more people in those other [areas] where all the evidence suggests we are pushing against an open door.’

The document also listed groups who were disengaged with the arts. Among them were; older people with limited ability to leave the house, people with very little spare time and those who spend a majority of their free time at home.

This comes after a recent survey revealed that 30% of primary schools and 10% of secondaries have not been on a theatre trip in the last 12 months. The report ‘Theatre attendance: in and out of school’ was undertaken by C3Education.

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