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Programmatic choices and the demand for theatre: the case of Flemish theatres

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  • Kristien Werck

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  • Bruno Heyndels
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    Abstract

    Theatre experts generally agree that the Flemish theatre has flourished artistically over the period 1980–2000. Attendance, on the other hand, has declined significantly. Following Lancaster’s characteristics approach, we identify several output characteristics of individual theatre productions. Using a panel of 59 Flemish theatres, we examine the impact on demand of both these output characteristics and of traditional determinants such as own price, income and the price of substitutes. Differences in the relevant geographical market for touring and non-touring theatres are considered. We find that the nature of the artistic output affects demand. Theatregoers prefer large productions (in terms of cast size), plays by Dutch-speaking playwrights and revivals of old productions. Own price and consumer income have the expected negative and positive effects on attendance. Observed trends toward a decreasing proportion of new plays, an increasing presence of plays by Dutch-speaking playwrights, and increasing consumer income had a stimulating effect on attendance. These trends have been offset, however, by trends toward smaller cast sizes and higher ticket prices as well as by unobserved factors captured by time dummies. The net result has been a considerable drop in attendance. Copyright Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2007

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    File URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10.1007/s10824-006-9026-3
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    Bibliographic Info

    Article provided by Springer in its journal Journal of Cultural Economics.

    Volume (Year): 31 (2007)
    Issue (Month): 1 (March)
    Pages: 25-41

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    Handle: RePEc:kap:jculte:v:31:y:2007:i:1:p:25-41

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    Web page: http://www.springerlink.com/link.asp?id=100284

    Related research

    Keywords: Characteristics approach; Demand; Theatre;

    References

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    1. Throsby, David, 1994. "The Production and Consumption of the Arts: A View of Cultural Economics," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 32(1), pages 1-29, March.
    2. Heilbrun,James & Gray,Charles M., 2001. "The Economics of Art and Culture," Cambridge Books, Cambridge University Press, number 9780521637121, October.
    3. John O’Hagan & Adriana Neligan, 2005. "State Subsidies and Repertoire Conventionality in the Non-Profit English Theatre Sector: An Econometric Analysis," Journal of Cultural Economics, Springer, vol. 29(1), pages 35-57, February.
    4. Jonathan Corning & Armando Levy, 2002. "Demand for Live Theater with Market Segmentation and Seasonality," Journal of Cultural Economics, Springer, vol. 26(3), pages 217-235, August.
    5. Daniel Urrutiaguer, 2002. "Quality Judgements and Demand for French Public Theatre," Journal of Cultural Economics, Springer, vol. 26(3), pages 185-202, August.
    6. Gapinski, James H, 1986. "The Lively Arts as Substitutes for the Lively Arts," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 76(2), pages 20-25, May.
    7. J. Pierce, 2000. "Programmatic Risk-Taking by American Opera Companies," Journal of Cultural Economics, Springer, vol. 24(1), pages 45-63, February.
    8. Jenkins, Stephen & Austen-Smith, David, 1987. "Interdependent decision-making in non-profit industries: A simultaneous equation analysis of English provincial theatre," International Journal of Industrial Organization, Elsevier, vol. 5(2), pages 149-174.
    9. Gapinski, James H, 1984. "The Economics of Performing Shakespeare," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 74(3), pages 458-66, June.
    10. Hausman, Jerry A, 1978. "Specification Tests in Econometrics," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 46(6), pages 1251-71, November.
    11. Revelli Federico, 2002. "Reaction or interaction? Spatial process identification in multi-tiered government structures," Department of Economics and Statistics Cognetti de Martiis. Working Papers 200202, University of Turin.
    12. Kelvin J. Lancaster, 1966. "A New Approach to Consumer Theory," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 74, pages 132.
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    Cited by:
    1. Marta Zieba & John O'Hagan, 2013. "Demand for Live Orchestral Music – The Case of German Kulturorchester," Journal of Economics and Statistics (Jahrbuecher fuer Nationaloekonomie und Statistik), Justus-Liebig University Giessen, Department of Statistics and Economics, vol. 233(2), pages 225-245, March.
    2. Zanola, Roberto, 2007. "Major influences on circus attendance," POLIS Working Papers 89, Institute of Public Policy and Public Choice - POLIS.
    3. Sibelle Diniz & Ana Machado, 2011. "Analysis of the consumption of artistic-cultural goods and services in Brazil," Journal of Cultural Economics, Springer, vol. 35(1), pages 1-18, February.
    4. Böhme, Enrico & Müller, Christopher, 2009. "Searching for the Concentration-Price Effect in the German Movie Theater Industry," MPRA Paper 15315, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    5. Jani-Petri Laamanen, 2013. "Estimating demand for opera using sales system data: the case of Finnish National Opera," Journal of Cultural Economics, Springer, vol. 37(4), pages 417-432, November.
    6. Sumiko Asai, 2011. "Demand analysis of hit music in Japan," Journal of Cultural Economics, Springer, vol. 35(2), pages 101-117, May.
    7. Cuccia, Tiziana, 2009. "A Contingent Ranking Study on the Preferences of Tourists across Seasons/A Contingent Ranking Study on the Preferences of Tourists across Seasons," Estudios de Economía Aplicada, Estudios de Economía Aplicada, vol. 27, pages 161-176, Abril.
    8. Marta Zieba, 2009. "Full-income and price elasticities of demand for German public theatre," Journal of Cultural Economics, Springer, vol. 33(2), pages 85-108, May.
    9. K. Willis & J. Snowball, 2009. "Investigating how the attributes of live theatre productions influence consumption choices using conjoint analysis: the example of the National Arts Festival, South Africa," Journal of Cultural Economics, Springer, vol. 33(3), pages 167-183, August.
    10. Victor Fernandez-Blanco & Luis Orea & Juan Prieto-Rodriguez, 2013. "Endogeneity and measurement errors when estimating demand functions with average prices: an example from the movie market," Empirical Economics, Springer, vol. 44(3), pages 1477-1496, June.
    11. José Grisolía & Kenneth Willis, 2012. "A latent class model of theatre demand," Journal of Cultural Economics, Springer, vol. 36(2), pages 113-139, May.

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