Performing Arts Statistics

This page presents short excerpts of relevant performing-arts-related research, including some exclusive data that isn't available in published reports. For a summary of the essential information on performing art presentation, please download our Arts Presentation Facts Sheet.

Presenters in Canada
Presenting Networks
Public Funding of Arts Presentation
Attendance and Importance of the Performing Arts
Attendance at Festivals
Economic Impact of the Performing Arts
Public Benefits and Social Impacts of the Performing Arts
Public Benefits of Performing Arts Facilities
Performing Arts and Health
Public Support to the Arts
Other Sources of Arts Statistics

Tips on Sharing Arts Facts via Twitter

 

Presenters in Canada

There are more than 1,400 performing arts presenting organizations in Canada. They present series or festivals or both. Annually, they present more than 80,000 performances by professional artists, and pay artistic fees estimated at more than $ 200 million.

Source: CAPACOA, Interim Report of Findings, The Value of Presenting, 2012.

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Presenting Networks

There are 39 presenting networks in Canada. Presenting networks are national in scope or regionally-based and typically serve non-profit presenters as well as municipal presenters, festivals and university presenters. Other presenting networks are specialized in one type of presenting activity and may serve festivals or presenters specialized in disciplines, such as dance or theatre.

Breakdown of presenting networks in Canada:

  • 26 regional multidisciplinary networks (6 of which also serve schools);
  • 5 festival networks, 3 of which also have an additional focus (jazz music, children programming, theatre);
  • 8 specialized networks.

Sources: Survey led by CAPACOA in April 2010 and list of presenting support organizations funded by Canadian Heritage in 2009-2010.

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Public Funding of Arts Presentation

The main source of funding for presenters at the federal level is the Canada Arts Presentation Fund (formerly known as Arts Presentation Canada). The program supported 600 presenting organizations in 224 communities1 with grants and contributions totaling 28.6 million dollars in 2011-2012.2

The 2008 Summative Evaluation of the program3 indicated that "Its focus on presenters and audiences is a unique and appreciated complement to other forms of support to the arts in Canada, both as an aid to ensuring that artists have the opportunity to present to audiences, and from the perspective of strengthening and expanding presentation capacity to fill unmet needs (such as new disciplines and genres, or professional artistic presentation of any sort, in remote locations). [CAPF] funding makes the arts more accessible." The Summative Evaluation also identified outcomes such as "economic development spin-offs; the formation of innovative partnerships; better quality of life in a revitalized, energized community."

Sources:
1 Information published on Canadian Heritage's website.
2 Canadian Conference of the Arts, Analysis of the 2011 Federal Budget, 2011.
3 Canada, Summative Evaluation of the Arts Presentation Canada Program, 2008.

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Attendance and Importance of the Performing Arts

Three in four Canadians (75%) attended a performing arts performance by professional artists in 2011.

  • 44% attended a theatrical performance, such as a drama, musical theatre, dinner theatre, comedy;
  • 42% attended a popular musical performance such as pop, rock, jazz, blues, folk, country and western;
  • 20% attended a symphonic or classical music performance;
  • 15% attended a dance performance.


86% of Canadians are accessing performing arts presentations via television, Internet or other media channels. Yet, they are twice as likely to ascribe a high importance to live performing arts attendance than to any media-based consumption.

79% of Canadians say they would miss it if there were no live, professional performing arts available in their community (21% to a moderate extent and 58% to a high extent).

Source: EKOS Research Associates, Survey of the General Public, The Value of Presenting, 2012.

Research commissioned by the Ontario Arts Council also provides measures of importance given to the performing arts:

  • 60% of Ontarians attended a concert by professional musicians at least once in 2011.
    • Of those who did, 74% described this activity as being “very important” to them.
  • 55% of Ontarians attended a play or musical with professional actors at least once in 2011.
    • Of those who did, 74% described this activity as being “very important” to them.
  • 25% of Ontarians attended a dance performance by professional dancers at least once in 2011.
    • Of those who did, 67% described this activity as being “very important” to them.

Source : WolfBrown, Ontario Arts Engagement Study, 2011.

37% of Canadians (10.4 million) attended a cultural or artistic festival in 2010. This represents an increase of 57% since 2005. In comparison, Canada's gross domestic product grew by 18,3% over the same period.

Source : Statistics Canada, General Social Survey, 2010.

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Economic Impact of the Performing Arts

  • The live performance sector contributed $2.0 billion to the Canadian Gross Domestic Product in 2010.
  • The live performance sector accounted for 57,000 jobs in 2010.

Source: Statistics Canada, Culture Statellite Account, 2014.
Note: These figures are estimated using an industry perspective. They cover all performing arts and presenting industries inputs and outputs, including culture and non-culture products. The Culture Satellite Account also provides figures estimated using a product perspective, which considers the production of culture goods and/or services across the economy regardless of the producing industry.

  • After adjusting for inflation, consumer spending on live performing arts increased by 49% between 2001 and 2008.
  • In 2008, Canadians spent more on performing arts ($1.426 billion) than on movie theatre admissions ($1.216 billion) or live sports events ($0.645 billion).
  • A considerable percentage of lower-income households choose to spend some money on live performing arts. Households with incomes of $25,000 or less are more likely to spend any money on live performing arts (15%) than on museum admissions (12%) and live sports (4%).

Source: Hill Strategies Research, Patterns in Performing Arts Spending in Canada in 2008.

  • The average Ontario arts and culture tourist spends twice as much per trip as does a typical tourist – $667 per trip versus $374.

Source: Research Resolutions & Consulting, Ontario Arts and Culture Tourism Profile, 2013.

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Public Benefits and Social Impacts of the Performing Arts

  • Nine in ten Canadians believe they get personal benefits out of attending professional performing arts. Most perceive the main benefit to be the entertainment experience of it (84%), but other benefits are recognized, such as emotional, spiritual or intellectual stimulation, an opportunity to experience something new, providing exposure to different cultures, and providing an opportunity to socialize.
  • 2 in 3 Canadians (65%) believe that the community as whole benefits more or as much as individual attendees from the presentation of the performing arts.
  • Canadians believe that the presentation of performing arts brings energy and vitality to communities, improves quality of life and well-being of residents, makes communities more creative and fosters a stronger sense of pride and identity.

Source: EKOS Research Associates, Survey of the General Public, The Value of Presenting, 2012.

  • 92% of Canadians believe that arts and culture make a community a better place to live.
  • 92% of Canadians believe that arts experiences are a valuable way of bringing together people from different languages and cultural traditions.
  • 92% of Canadians believe that arts are an important way of helping people think and work creatively.
  • 90% of Canadians believe that exposure to arts and culture is important to individual well-being.
  • 87% of Canadians believe that the arts and culture help us express and define what it means to be Canadian.
  • 86% of Canadians believe that the arts and cultural activities are important to a community’s economic well-being.

Source: Phoenix Strategic Perspectives, The Arts and Heritage in Canada – Access and Availability 2012.

  • 8 of 10 Canadians believe that live theatre is important to making communities vibrant places to live.

Source: Nanos Research, Canadian Theatre: Creating Vibrant Communities, 2014.

  • Festival attendees are twice as likely as non-attendees to volunteer, even accounting for other factors.
  • Classical music attendees are 29% more likely to report very strong satisfaction with life than non-attendees, even accounting for other factors.
  • In general, arts goers have better health, higher volunteer rates, and stronger satisfaction with life.

Source: Hill Strategies, The Arts and Individual Well-Being in Canada, 2013.

  • Adults who attend live arts performances, art museums or art galleries are far more likely than non-attendees to vote [38% more, in the case of live arts attendees], volunteer, or take part in community events.

Source: National Endowment for the arts, Art-Goers in Their Communities: Patterns of Civic and Social Engagement, 2009.

  • Participation in the arts, especially as audience, predicts civic engagement, tolerance and altruism.

Source: University of Illinois at Chicago, "Interest in arts predicts social responsibility," ScienceDaily, 16 Aug. 2012.

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Public Benefits of Performing Arts Facilities

  • Canadians believe that performing arts venues provide community-wide benefits, such as improved quality of life (87% say moderate to high importance), fostering a sense of community pride (87%), contributing to economic development (88%), and greater community safety through increased activity at night (60%).

Source: EKOS Research Associates, Survey of the General Public, The Value of Presenting, 2012.

  • 86% of Canadians feel that live performance spaces in their community contribute to quality of life.

Source: Phoenix Strategic Perspectives, The Arts and Heritage in Canada – Access and Availability 2012.

  • 80% of Canadians agree theatres are important for attracting visitors to communities.

Source: Nanos Research, Canadian Theatre: Creating Vibrant Communities, 2014.

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Performing Arts and Health

  • People who attend theatre, pop music concerts or cultural festivals are up to 32% more likely to report very good or excellent health, even accounting for other factors.1
  • People who attend theatre/dance and pop or classical concerts are more likely to report good health and quality of life, even after adjusting for other factors.2
  • People who attend concert, theatre or film are significantly healthier, have lower anxiety and are less subject to depression.3
  • The more frequently people attend performing arts and other receptive arts, the more likely they are to report good health.3,4
  • Attending concerts and theatre increases perceived vitality.5,6
  • Attending cultural events is linked with longevity. People who rarely attend such events run a nearly 60% higher mortality risk than those attending most often.7
  • Rare and moderate cultural events attendees in urban areas are 3 times more likely to die of cancer over time than frequent attendees.8
  • More arts and health facts

Sources:
1 Hill Strategies, The Arts and Individual Well-Being in Canada, 2013.
2 Tellervo Nenonen et al., Cultural services and activities: The association with self-rated health and quality of life, 2014.
3 Koenraad Cuypers et al., Patterns of receptive and creative cultural activities and their association with perceived health, anxiety, depression and satisfaction with life among adults, 2011.
4 Anna Wilkinson et al., Are variations in rates of attending cultural activities associated with population health in the United States?, 2007.
5 Lars Olov Bygren et al., Cultural participation and health: a randomized controlled trial among medical care staff, 2009.
6 Töres Theorell et al., A note on designing evaluations of health effects of cultural activities at work, 2009.
7 Lars Olov Bygren et al., Attendance at cultural events, reading books or periodicals, and making music or singing in a choir as determinants for survival, 1996.
8 Lars Olov Bygren et al., Attending cultural events and cancer mortality: A Swedish cohort study, 2009.

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Public Support to the Arts

  • Volunteers are crucial in performing arts presentation: for each paid staff member working in the field, there are 17 volunteers giving their time, thereby enabling a broad range of benefits for their community.

Source: Strategic Moves, Interim Report of Findings, The Value of Presenting, 2012.

  • Canadians volunteered 100 million hours for arts and culture organizations in 2010.
  • Those Canadians who volunteered gave on average more time for arts and culture than any other sector in 2010 (127 hours, vs 105 in 2007).
  • 3% of Canadians donated $108 million to arts and culture organizations in 2010.

Source: Statistics Canada, Canada Survey on Giving, Volunteering and Participating, 2010.

  • Nine in ten Canadians (90%) agree with governments providing support for the arts and culture.

Source: Phoenix Strategic Perspectives, The Arts and Heritage in Canada – Access and Availability 2012.

  • 81% of Ontarians agree that the government should spend public dollars to support the arts.

Source: Environics, The Arts And The Quality Of Life: The Attitudes Of Ontarians, 2010.

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Other Sources of Arts Statistics

About Performing Arts Presentation
The essential information on arts presentation in a simple facts sheet.

Arts Facts
Recent and relevant statistics compiled by CAPACOA for the Canadian Arts Coalition, for Arts Day on Parliament Hill 2014.

Arts Research Monitor
Database of research on the arts, indexed by theme.

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Tips on Sharing Arts Facts via Twitter

How can you make your arts facts fit in 140 characters, reach a wide audience and ensure impact? Here are a few tips:

  1. Ensure to always leave 15-20 characters for retweets.
    1. This will sometimes require condensing or truncating a few words: Canadians = Cdns; organizations = orgs; government = gov.
    2. If you tweet about a given benefit, open your tweet with the given benefit and close your sentence with this short formula: ", say XX% of Cdns".
  2. In order to reach tweeps beyond your immediate followers, place hashtags before keywords that could potentially reach people in other networks: #wellbeing, #qualityoflife, #economy, #health, #education.
  3. A statistic without a source has little credibility. Always provide a link to the primary source for the statistic or to a reliable secondary source.
  4. If you have 30 characters or more at the end of your tweet, add #artsadvoc, which stands for arts advocacy.
  5. Here's an example of a tweet using all of these tips:
    Exposure to arts and culture is important to individual #wellbeing, say 90% of Cdns. http://ow.ly/hePu5 #artsadvoc

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