LPA Ticket Attendance and Revenue Survey 2015

Photo: Lore - Bangarra Dance Theatre, Jeff Tan

OperaClick for more info

In 2015, the Opera category experienced a slight decrease in revenue and an increase in total attendances. Gross revenue declined by 2.6% from $42.62 million to $41.51 million, while total attendance grew by 12%. The decrease in average ticket price by 2.8% from $124.92 to $121.43 helps to explain the decrease in revenue despite the growth in attendance.

The majority of ticket sales and thus revenue came from productions staged by AMPAG companies. Within AMPAG, Opera Australia was the largest company in 2015, followed by Opera Queensland, West Australian Opera Company and The State Opera of South Australia. Notably, Opera Australia staged its regular spring season in Melbourne during 2015, which included The Marriage of Figaro and The Elixir of Love. Other major performances by Opera Australia included Opera on the Harbour, Madama Butterfly and Turandot.

Slight increases in growth were experienced in New South Wales with revenue increasing by 8% and attendance by 21%, while in South Australia revenue and attendance grew by 12% and 15% respectively. Western Australia saw a significant increase in attendance (99%), but a decline in revenue of 19% which was predominately due to a significantly lower than average ticket price ($24.21) for shows staged by AMPAG companies in Western Australia throughout the year. All other states experienced negative growth in Opera, particularly Queensland where revenue (63%) and attendance (36%) both fell significantly.

Close Table

Opera - Revenue and Attendance (2004 –2015)

Revenue ($) Growth (%) Total Attendance* Growth (%) Average Ticket Price ($)** Growth (%)
2004 $62,562,433 629,808 $108.88
2005 $46,390,544 -25.8% 531,595 -15.6% $94.38 -13.3%
2006 $48,331,324 4.2% 515,927 -2.9% $102.40 8.5%
2007 $47,249,031 -2.2% 591,605 14.7% $85.28 -16.7%
2008 $41,316,885 -12.6% 402,549 -32.0% $114.46 34.2%
2009 $44,044,027 6.6% 448,096 11.3% $111.62 -2.5%
2010 $40,128,943 -8.9% 409,541 -8.6% $112.86 1.1%
2011 $47,305,786 17.9% 439,041 7.2% $124.66 10.5%
2012 $47,843,971 1.1% 430,904 -1.9% $126.84 1.8%
2013 $43,283,705 -9.5% 344,761 -20.0% $145.28 14.5%
2014 $42,620,749 -1.5% 386,927 12.2% $124.92 -14.0%
2015 $41,505,346 -2.6% 433,198 12.0% $121.43 -2.8%

*Based on both paid and unpaid tickets

** Average Ticket Prices are calculated based only on paid tickets

State/Territory Breakdown Close Table

Close Table

Opera - Revenue by State/Territory (2015)

State/Territory Revenue ($) Proportion Industry Share Change From 2014 Attendance Proportion Industry Share Change From 2014
NSW $30,363,572 73.2% 7.3% 253,937 57.7% 5.2%
VIC $7,446,330 17.9% -3.5% 94,716 21.9% -3.0%
QLD $913,346 2.2% -3.6% 24,851 6.7% -5.8%
WA $1,141,310 2.7% -0.5% 39,229 9.1% 4.0%
SA $1,451,595 3.5% 0.5% 17,255 4.0% 0.1%
ACT/NT/TAS $189,193 0.5% -0.1% $3,210 0.7% -0.3%

Photo: North by Northwest - Kay + McLean Productions and Melbourne Theatre Company, Jeff Busby

Supplementary Data

(Australia Council for the Arts (Key Organisations) and Australian Performing Arts Centres Association (APACA) members)

The Opera category drew attendance of 20,147 and generated $755,155 in revenue, equating to 1.3% and 1.7% of total revenue and attendance respectively. While it is one of the smallest categories in this survey, opera performances have the highest average ticket prices ($69.79) across the industry. However, 46% of tickets in this category were unpaid, a proportion which is well above the industry average of 26%.

Regional and metropolitan venues generated 97% of revenue for this category. Notable venues include Bathurst Memorial Entertainment Centre (NSW), City Recital Hall (NSW) and Orange Civic Theatre (NSW).

Photo: North by Northwest - Kay + McLean Productions and Melbourne Theatre Company, Jeff Busby