Increasing young people's attendances at the theatre: a case study in Sheffield, UK

TAYLOR, Peter, OWEN, Elizabeth, BELL, Haidee and WITHNALL, Sophie (2001). Increasing young people's attendances at the theatre: a case study in Sheffield, UK. Managing Leisure, 6 (3), 141-153.

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A longstanding concern for the narrow audience base in the subsidized arts has been re-expressed recently by the Government in the UK, and translated into a policy initiative in the form of a New Audiences Fund. This has focused on, among other aims, increasing participation in the arts by young people. The first award from this fund, and one of the largest to date, was to Sheffield Theatres, for a project, 'How Much?', designed to attract more 16–24-year-olds to their theatres. This paper reports on research of young attenders at Sheffield Theatres and non-attenders during the How Much? project. It uses these results to comment on the problems of attracting young people to the theatre and on the efficacy of different elements of the marketing mix in attempting to do so. The project has achieved significant successes, not least in the number of first-time young visitors attracted to Sheffield Theatres. It is concluded that price discounts are necessary and important attractions to young people but they are not sufficient and must be complemented by other elements of the marketing mix. Further, marketing initiatives such as How Much? generate a good response from certain, predictable, young, market segments, but others are harder to attract.

Item Type: Article
Research Institute, Centre or Group - Does NOT include content added after October 2018: Sport Industry Research Centre
Identification Number:
Page Range: 141-153
Depositing User: Rebecca Jones
Date Deposited: 02 Apr 2014 13:28
Last Modified: 18 Mar 2021 23:45

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