LPA Ticket Attendance and Revenue Survey 2013

Photo: Waiting for Godot - Sydney Theatre Company, Lisa Tomasetti

Revenue and Attendance by State

Clarence Shpritz

Overall Results

Between 2012 and 2013, New South Wales and Victoria experienced gains in terms of revenue and attendance. The two states had combined revenue of $970.98 million, or approximately two-thirds of the entire Australian Live Performance Industry. Despite the overall gains in New South Wales, the State experienced declines in terms of industry share, as growth in other states outpaced that in New South Wales.

Revenue in Victoria increased more strongly (by 37.5%) and that State increased its share of industry. Revenue growth in Victoria was largely driven by growth in the Circus and Physical Theatre, Contemporary Music and Musical Theatre categories. On the other hand, the Australian Capital Territory experienced a fall in revenue despite higher attendances. Most other states and territories had a stronger year, with gains to revenues and attendances. In particular, Western Australia experienced significant revenue growth (44.9%) with gains in all event categories other than Theatre, and particularly strong growth in Circus and Physical Theatre. South Australia also performed well, although this was in part due to the inclusion of Adelaide Fringe for the first time in 2013.Click for more info

Close Table

Total Revenue and Attendances by State/Territory (2012-13)

State/Territory Revenue Share of Industry (2013) Share of Industry (2012) Change in Revenue from 2012 Tickets Share of Industry (2013) Share of Industry (2012) Change in Attendance from 2012
New South Wales $497,463,659 33.6% 37.0% 11.5% 5,865,914 32.7% 35.6% 1.2%
Victoria $473,516,913 32.0% 28.6% 37.5% 5,607,475 31.3% 30.2% 14.1%
Queensland $200,178,524 13.5% 15.3% 8.9% 2,318,207 12.9% 14.1% 0.7%
Western Australia $194,312,089 13.1% 11.1% 44.9% 2,153,483 12.0% 11.0% 20.2%
South Australia $93,864,893 6.3% 6.1% 27.6% 1,497,204 8.4% 6.5% 42.1%
Australian Capital Territory $15,104,224 1.0% 1.4% -12.7% 351,242 2.0% 1.7% 29.4%
Tasmania $2,402,818 0.2% 0.4% -43.1% 75,115 0.4% 0.6% -23.3%
Northern Territory $2,133,774 0.1% 0.1% 44.9% 57,986 0.3% 0.3% 32.8%
Total $1,478,976,893 100.0% 100.0% 22.7% 17,926,626 100.0% 100.0% 10.2%

Percentage Movement by State

Photo: Nixon in China - Victorian Opera, Jeff Busby

Population and Per Capita Results Click for more info

Share of population is shown by bubble size

A comparison of each state and territory’s share of the Live Performance Industry against their population provides insight into spend per capita as well as the concentration of the Industry relative to where people live. The data illustrates that Victoria and Western Australia command a larger share of both Live Performance revenue and attendance compared to their share of Australia’s population. Although New South Wales’ share of the industry declined in 2013, it still remained slightly above its share of the population. Across the other States and Territories, all had a smaller share of industry revenue compared to their population, although South Australia and the Australian Capital Territory had a larger share of attendance.

There exist several possible explanations for these disproportional results:

  • Some of Australia’s largest performing arts companies are based in New South Wales and Victoria and as such stage the bulk of their performances in Sydney and Melbourne, for example Opera Australia (Sydney), Melbourne Symphony Orchestra, Sydney Symphony Orchestra and The Australian Ballet (Melbourne).
  • Destination NSW, The Victorian Major Events Company and Tourism and Events Queensland are particularly active in the major events market and as such have been successful in attracting major live performance events to these states.
  • The majority of regional performances are not included in this Survey and as such, performances in larger states with significant regional markets, such as Queensland and Western Australia are under-reported. Further, cities such as Brisbane and Perth are constrained in their ability to host performances due to a smaller number of venues and hence capacity, compared to Melbourne for example.
  • South Australia’s larger share of attendance can partly be explained by the inclusion of Adelaide Fringe data. This festival attracted high attendance to the numerous low cost events.

It should be noted that these state and territory breakdowns do not take into account people who travel from interstate or overseas to watch a live performance. Industry share only accounts for the state or territory in which the performance took place and hence where the revenue and attendance are recognised. This is particularly relevant for categories such as Musical Theatre where musicals opening their season in a particular state often attract significant visitation from outside that state.

Close Table

Population and Per Capita Results (2013)

State/Territory Population (2013) (m) Share of Population Share of Industry Revenue  Share of Industry Attendance Spend per Capita
New South Wales 7.47 32.0% 33.6% 32.7% $66.64
Victoria 5.79 24.8% 32.0% 31.3% $81.77
Queensland 4.69 20.1% 13.5% 12.9% $42.67
Western Australia 2.55 10.9% 13.1% 12.0% $76.17
South Australia 1.68 7.2% 6.3% 8.4% $55.96
Australian Capital Territory 0.38 1.6% 1.0% 2.0% $39.32
Tasmania 0.51 2.2% 0.2% 0.4% $4.68
Northern Territory 0.24 1.0% 0.1% 0.3% $8.80
Total 23.32  100.0% 100.0% 100.0% $63.42

* Population is as of December 2013 based on estimates by the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) Cat. No. 3101.0

Photo: Cinderella - The Australian Ballet, Marisa Ho