SPORTS AND ENTERTAINMENT: 360 Allstars is a touring show owned by a Lismore man that performed recently in Lismore.
SPORTS AND ENTERTAINMENT: 360 Allstars is a touring show owned by a Lismore man that performed recently in Lismore. Matt Loncar

Turns out we are not so much into arts after all

NEW data collected by the Australia Council seems to dispel the myth that the Northern Rivers was an arts-loving community.

Minister for the Arts Senator Mitch Fifield last week launched a new interactive Australia Council resource, which offers research on arts engagement, employment and ticketing trends across Australia.

The results, available via the Arts Nation reserach hub, draw on new analysis of commercial ticketing data for arts and sport events commissioned from TEG Analytics, with statistics divided by federal electorate.

As the key insight for Richmond, the report states ticket buyers are buying fewer tickets and attending fewer events than the national average.

The average number of tickets purchased in Richmond was 3.1 for arts events (national average is 3.6), versus 4.2 average in the electorate for sports events.

Richmond arts lovers are spending "slightly more" than the national average on arts events and the percentage of ticket buyers buying tickets to events interstate was higher than average, according to the report.

Richmond's average arts expenditure was $373.80 while the national average was $364.50.

In Page, with a population of 152,1911 according to the 2016 Census, ticket buyers are buying fewer tickets and attending fewer events than the national average.

The average number of tickets purchased in Page was 3.3 for arts events , versus 4.3 average in the electorate for sports events.

Despite this, they are spending more than the national average and the percentage of ticket buyers buying tickets to events interstate was higher than average.

Page's average arts spenditure was $386.50 while the national average was $364.50.

The new tool by the Australia Council research aims to expand knowledge about the preferences, behaviours and purchasing patterns of arts audiences.

Other numbers

The analysis was unable to offer indicators for number of people purchasing tickets in Page or Richmond to events within their own communities, as "missing values indicate sample too small to measure" according to TEG Analytics.

In Regional NSW, the study showed a high number of individuals engages with the arts, at 98 per cent, 97 per cent listen to music, 77 per cent read books, 71 per cent attend to gigs in person, 13 per cent are involved with community arts and cultural development, 32 per cent engage with the arts of their cultural background and 47 per cent participate creatively in the area.

Employment

At June 2017, the report identified 1236 businesses within the cultural and creative industries in Richmond.

In 2016 in the electorate, 2499 people were working in occupations that are both cultural and creative such as musicians, dancers, actors and authors, but also includes 546 teachers, library technicians, park rangers and camera operators (classified as cultural occupations) and 126 in creative occupations such as software developers, programmers and system analysts.

They accounted for 3.7 per cent of the total electorate workforce, compared to 3.9 per cent of the national workforce.

For Page, the report identified 521 businesses within the cultural and creative industries

In 2016 in that electorate, 1301 people were recorded in 2016 working in occupations that are both cultural and creative such as musicians, dancers, actors and authors, but that number also includes 434 teachers, library technicians, park rangers and camera operators (classified as cultural occupations) and 91 in creative occupations such as software developers, programmers and system analysts.

They accounted for 2 per cent of the total electorate workforce, compared to 3.9 per cent of the national workforce.

These are actively trading businesses and non-profit institutions encompassing activities such as arts education, music publishing, museum operation, book retailing, radio and television broadcasting, clothing manufacturing and retailing, and creative arts businesses.



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