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New survey reflects happy audiences

First Published 25 March 2010, Last Updated 29 March 2010

A new report entitled The West End Theatre Audience has been published, giving a greater insight into London’s theatregoing community, 93% of whom described the performance they attended as good.

Produced by the Society of London Theatre (SOLT) in partnership with market research agency Ipsos MORI, the report, which draws on research conducted at all major theatres represented in full SOLT membership, also shows that 83% of theatregoers thought the price of their ticket represented good value for money.

Among the other topics on which The West End Theatre Audience sheds light are current ticket-buying trends, with the number of theatregoers purchasing tickets online rising to 48% from 17% in 2003, and the impact of reality casting shows, with around one third of audiences who had seen such shows saying it encouraged them to see musical in the West End.

Speaking about The West End Theatre Audience, Richard Pulford, Chief Executive of the Society of London Theatre, commented: “This report will be required reading for anyone working or interested in London theatre. The overall picture painted by the report is very positive. The London theatre audience is not only growing, but evidently strongly committed. We know that there is still more to be done to improve our buildings and the overall comfort of the theatre experience.”

The publication of The West End Theatre Audience comes at a time when London theatre is bucking the recession and proving to be in a strong position. Statistics published at the start of the year showed 2009 to have been a record-breaking year for the industry, with total revenue breaking the half a billion pound mark for the first time and audience numbers hitting a new high by pushing through the 14 million barrier. The recent Laurence Olivier Awards underlined theatre’s current popularity, with more than 113,000 excited theatregoers logging on to Official London Theatre to watch the ceremony live online.

Copies of the 166-page The West End Theatre Audience can be purchased from SOLT for £50 plus p&p. To order a report call 020 7557 6700 or email



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