British study: getting audiences back for first concert is critical step

Posted on: September 22, 2021

“The key to welcoming classical music audiences back isn’t bombarding them with lots of dates, but getting them to their first concert again for reassurance, research suggests,” writes Rosie Pentreath in Tuesday’s (9/21) Classic FM (U.K.). “The research, which was conducted by the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra and complemented by further research by Insights Alliance [both based in the U.K.], found that audience confidence rises by nearly 50 percent in people after they attend their first concert [since] the COVID-19 pandemic. Of those surveyed before their first trip back to the concert hall, only 53 percent of people said they would feel confident returning to classical concerts. Meanwhile, of those surveyed after their first visit, 79 percent expressed confidence in attending live events…. The combined research, which takes in responses from 2,000 adults who attended a cultural event or venue between 19 July and 1 August 2021, shows a promising increase in audience confidence since summer 2021. In the summer, a quarter of regular concertgoers who were surveyed indicated that they were not convinced when concerts would be safe again…. A further 19 percent said they were looking forward to returning to concerts but it was not a priority.”