The latest industry news to your inbox.


I'd like to hear about marketing opportunities


I accept IQ Magazine's Terms and Conditions and Privacy Policy


Concert revenue boosts growth for UK theatres

According to new data by membership associate UK Theatre, income from live music grew 47% in 2013–2016, bolstering theatres in "challenging times"

By Jon Chapple on 11 Dec 2017

Colston Hall in Bristol is a UK Theatre affiliate member

Colston Hall in Bristol is a UK Theatre affiliate member

image © Philip Halling

Revenue from concerts held at Britain’s theatres grew 47% in the three years from 2013 to 2016, according to a new report by membership body UK Theatre, highlighting the increasing importance of live music to the performing arts industry.

UK Theatre’s newly released Sales Data Report 2013–2016 reveals that concerts have overtaken pantomime as the highest-performing genre across UK Theatre’s member venues. Over half a million more tickets were sold for concerts at UK Theatre venues in 2016 compared to 2013, delivering a £3.29 increase in average yield, with income from rock and pop concerts growing the fastest: 50% over the three years.

Theatres with a capacity above 1,000 were the most financially important venues for rock and pop shows, followed by concert halls and the auditoria of “principally presenting theatres” – or venues which chiefly present, rather than produce, shows – with a capacity of 500–1,000.

“This report is a vote of confidence for the industry in challenging times”

UK Theatre president Fiona Allan says the growth in concerts demonstrates that theatre managers are “responding to the evolving tastes of audiences”.

Income recorded at UK Theatre venues for all types of programming grew 18%.

“Our sector has many reasons to be cheerful,” comments Allan. “This report is a vote of confidence for the industry in challenging times. We’re continuing to attract audiences, and as an industry we’re showing remarkable resilience during a time of unprecedented financial pressure.

“These figures demonstrate the vital importance of the arts to the national economy, and show that theatre remains a popular and important part of our cultural life in the UK.”


Get more stories like this in your inbox by signing up for IQ Index, IQ’s free email digest of essential live music industry news.

More news

Drape, Measham, Lord named NTIA Ambassadors of the... The awards, presented by the Night Time Industries Association, recognise the winners' contributions to the health of the UK's night-time economy
LN’s new Titan Warehouse to open next March Fans of bass and house music are expected to flock in their thousands to the opening weekend of the UK's largest warehouse venue
New 3,000-cap. venue, Magazine London, to open in ... Launched by Vibration Group, which manages Printworks, Magazine London will also incorporate a 7,000-cap. festival site on the Greenwich peninsula
Oxford’s the Cellar launches Cellar Forever ... Faced with a catastrophic reduction in capacity to 60, the grassroots UK venue is calling on "people power" to secure its long-term future
“We have to restart this conversation”: MVT calls ... At Venues Day yesterday, Music Venue Trust unveiled a statement of intent it hopes will unite the music industry behind the UK's grassroots venues