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Knowledge, Research and Innovation

Building Audiences for the Arts: Research from The Wallace Foundation

For 15 years, The Wallace Foundation has supported audience-building efforts by arts organizations and commissioned research to understand what works, what doesn’t and why.

Learn more about a new $40 million initiative by The Wallace Foundation to help arts organizations build audiences

The Road to Results: Effective Practices for Building Arts Audiences

The Road to Results: Effective Practices for Building Arts Audiences

This report identifies and examines nine practices of arts organizations that successfully expanded their audiences.
More Than Just a Party: How the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum Boosted Participation by Young Adults

More Than Just a Party: How the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum Boosted Participation by Young Adults

Learn how the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum Boosted Participation by Young Adults.
Cultivating the Next Generation of Art Lovers: How Boston Lyric Opera Sought to Create Greater Opportunities for Families to Attend Opera

Cultivating the Next Generation of Art Lovers: How Boston Lyric Opera Sought to Create Greater Opportunities for Families to Attend Opera

Learn how Boston Lyric Opera sought to create greater opportunities for families to attend opera.

Building Deeper Relationships: How Steppenwolf Theatre Company Is Turning Single-Ticket Buyers Into Repeat Visitors

Building Deeper Relationships: How Steppenwolf Theatre Company Is Turning Single-Ticket Buyers Into Repeat Visitors

Learn how the Steppenwolf Theatre Company is turning single-ticket buyers into repeat visitors.
Attracting an Elusive Audience: How the San Francisco Girls Chorus Is Breaking Down Stereotypes and Generating Interest Among Classical Music Patrons

Attracting an Elusive Audience: How the San Francisco Girls Chorus Is Breaking Down Stereotypes and Generating Interest Among Classical Music Patrons

Learn how the San Francisco Girls Chorus is breaking down stereotypes and generating interest among classical music patrons.

Learn more about The Wallace Foundation’s research on audience development for the arts.

These resources are made possible by The Wallace Foundation. The League is pleased to be working in partnership with the Foundation to help share ideas and practical solutions to problems in building audiences for the arts.

ORR 2010-2011


Repertoire Reports by Composer

These reports list all classical season works performed by orchestras during the specified season. The reports are alphabetized by composer, then by the composer’s works. The reports include the orchestra, conductor, and soloist (if applicable) who performed the work, and the date of the first performance.  If an orchestra performed the work on a series that included multiple concerts, only the first concert is indicated.


Repertoire Reports by Meeting Group

These reports list all classical season works performed by orchestras during the specified season.  The reports are alphabetized by composer, then by the composer’s works.  The reports include the orchestra, conductor, and soloist (if applicable) who performed the work, and the date of the first performance.  If an orchestra performed the work on a series that included multiple concerts, only the first concert is indicated.


Concert Programs by Meeting Group

These reports list the programming of each concert. The reports are organized alphabetically by orchestra, then chronologically by date of concert. The reports also include the conductor and soloist where applicable, and individual concert programming.


Soloist Appearances

These reports list all soloists scheduled to appear with orchestras throughout the 2009-10 season.  The reports are organized alphabetically by instrument of the soloist, then by last name of the soloist.  The reports include the first date of the concert(s), as well as the orchestra and conductor who accompanied the soloist. The reports also include the work performed on the concert.


Performances of Works by U.S. Composers

These reports list the performances of American composers. The lists are alphabetized by composer, then by the composer’s works, and include the date first performed, conductor, orchestra and soloist (if applicable). The “performances” column on the right side of the page indicates the number of times the work was performed by each orchestra, while the “total performances” category indicates the aggregate sum of all orchestra performances. (Note that certain composers are not included on this list)


Performances of Works Composed within the Past 25 Years

These reports list the performances of contemporary works, composed within 25 years of the specified season.  The lists are alphabetized by composer, then by the composer’s works, and include the date first performed, conductor, orchestra and soloist (if applicable).  The “performances” column on the right side of the page indicates the number of times the work was performed by each orchestra, while the “total performances” category indicates the aggregate sum of all orchestra performances.


Premiere Performances (World, U.S. and Canadian)

These reports list all premieres including World, US, and Canadian. Under each heading, the reports are alphabetized by composer, then by the composer’s works and  includes who commissioned the work, the first performance date, conductor and soloist (if applicable) and the orchestra giving the premiere.

Technology News of Note

November 2013

  1. As Downloads Dip, Music Executives Cast a Wary Eye on Streaming Services

    As sales of CDs plunged over the last decade, the music industry clung to one comfort: downloads continued to sell briskly as people filled their computers and iPods with songs by the billions.  Now even that certainty seems to have disappeared, as downloads – after enjoying double-digit growth in the years after Apple opened its iTunes store in 2003 – head toward their first yearly decline.

    So far this year, total digital album and track downloads in the United States (using the industry’s standard yardstick of 10 tracks to an album) are down almost 1 percent from the same time last year, according to the tracking service Nielsen SoundScan.  Music executives and analysts disagree about exactly what is causing this slowdown, but many cite streaming music services like Pandora, Spotify and YouTube as one possible cause.   (Source: New York Times)

  2. From Flying Bows to Intent Faces, Verdi Via a Laptop

    The Chicago Symphony Orchestra’s recent performance of the Verdi Requiem was streamed live from Orchestra Hall for the first time on its own Web site. It was also viewable on Facebook and other sites and beamed to an outdoor screen at the Pritzker Pavilion in Millennium Park. (Source: New York Times)

  3. Digital piracy not harming entertainment industries: study

    A new study by researchers at the London School of Economics suggests the music and movie industries have been exaggerating the impact digital file sharing has had on their bottom line and found that for some creative industries, copyright infringement might actually be helping boost revenues.   (Source: CBC News)

  4. Facebook Radically Simplifies Ad Buying

    Facebook
    ad buyers have cause to celebrate, as the social network has unveiled a major overhaul of both its basic ad-buying platform, Ads Manager, and its more sophisticated offering, Power Editor, both of which now boast a more streamlined interface.  Previously, ad buyers were asked to choose from a range of ad options and then select their campaign objectives and optimization methods.  Now, more reasonably, advertisers are first asked to identify their objectives.  (Source: Mashable)

  5. How Spotify and its digital music rivals can win over artists: 'Just include us'

    How can digital music services win praise from musicians, rather than the kind of attacks recently aimed at Spotify by Thom Yorke and David Byrne?   For cellist Zoe Keating, it’s simple. "Just include us," she said during a debate organized by Virgin that brought musicians, managers and technology firms together for a discussion of music/tech disruption.  "An artist like me couldn’t exist without technology: I can just record music in my basement and release it on the internet," said Keating.  "But this is not just an excuse for services to replicate the payment landscapes of the past….and take advantage of those without power … Corporations do have a responsibility not just to their shareholders but to the world at large, and to artists."  Keating renewed her previous call for streaming services to share more data with musicians, as well as forging more links to other startups that help artists to connect directly with fans.    (Source: The Guardian)

  6. Spotify fight: artists threaten to sue labels over music streaming

    Proponents of music streaming as a viable business model often point to Scandinavia as proof. Sweden, the birth country of Spotify, saw music sales jump 13.8% in 2012 and 12% in the first half of 2013 – the turnaround in revenue is largely attributed to the streaming service.  So how come Swedish artists are far from cheering?  A number of Swedish artists are threatening to sue Universal and Warner Music over the paltry royalties they get from people streaming their music. If record labels don't agree to increase the share of the royalties distributed to artists from services such as Spotify, the artists will start demanding that their music is removed from the service, says Swedish Musicians' Union lawyer Per Herrey.   (Source: The Guardian)

  7. Merlin CEO: major labels are setting new music services up to fail

    Merlin, a UK-based organization that represents the global digital rights of indie labels from more than 35 countries, is currently negotiating with Beats Music and others about licensing its repertoire to their music subscription services.  But, Merlin’s CEO warned that it may not be able to reach an agreement.  The dispute turns on how much the new services are going to pay independent labels, which largely depends on the deals music services strike with the majors.   The big labels are demanding that new services pay them huge minimum guarantees, regardless of whether the music is actually consumed, or whether the service is even able to go to market. These demands Merlin’s CEO alleges are not leaving enough money on the table for independent artists.   (Source: GigaOm)

  8. Royal Opera House Plans Simulcasts in U.S.

    The Royal Opera House in London has announced that part of its lineup from the 2013-14 season will be simulcast for the first time in more than 500 movie theaters in the United States.  Tickets are at screenvision.com/roh.   (Source: New York Times)

  9. Vienna State Opera goes live stream

    For all those who can't come to the Vienna State Opera — it can now come to you.  The company is now offering what it describes as state-of-the art live streaming, with viewers able to switch between a view of the stage and close-ups with moving cameras. Innovations promised by the year's end will include apps providing subtitles in English, German and Korean and a synchronized score of the work being shown.  A live stream performance costs 14 euros ($20) while an on-demand stream from the archives will sell for 5 euros, or almost $7.  (Source: Yahoo)

  10. New York Philharmonic to Stream Video Performances

    The New York Philharmonic is revisiting a few highlights of its recent history, and inviting its fans to tune in and relive those events as well, by way of a five-day “I ♥ New York Philharmonic Festival,” to be streamed on the classical music video Web site medici.tv. The festival includes “A Dancer’s Dream” (a staging of Stravinsky’s “Fairy’s Kiss” and “Petrushka”, using a combination of film and live action), Stockhausen’s “Gruppen,” (performed in 2012 at the Park Avenue Armory), Lorin Maazel’s historic 2008 visit to North Korea for a concert in Pyongyang, a February 2013 “Chinese New Year” gala (conducted by Long Yu, with the pianist Lang Lang and the mezzo-soprano Jennifer Johnson Cano as the soloists) and Lindberg’s “Kraft” (conducted by Mr. Gilbert in Dresden, Germany) (Source: New York Times)

  11. Keep Wireless Mics Interference-Free

    Decisions will soon be made by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) that could have a negative impact on wireless microphone users, including opera companies, orchestras and other performing arts organizations.  The League of American Orchestras and Opera America are urging their members to contact their members of Congress to ask them to go on record in support of the performing arts, by becoming a cosponsor of a bill that would protect performing arts wireless technology from potential interference.   The Wireless Microphone Users Interference Protection Act of 2013 has been introduced by Congressman Bobby L. Rush (D-IL-01) and it asks the FCC to protect the existing space designated for wireless microphone users, so that users will not suffer interference during performances.   (Source: League of American Orchestras)

  12. Research Update #2: Creating Online Audiences for Orchestras

    The Arts Management and Technology Laboratory at Carnegie-Mellon University has been researching best-practice examples of efforts by symphony orchestras to create online audiences for their music beyond the walls of a traditional concert hall.  The latest installment inspects three of these orchestras—the Detroit Symphony Orchestra, the Sydney Symphony Orchestra, and the Philharmonia Orchestra (UK)—with a closer look at some of the tools they use, how these tools are being implemented, and the resulting opportunities they create.   (Source: AMTLab)

  13. Social media brings new orchestra, opera fans

    The Philadelphia Orchestra and Opera Philadelphia have had recent audience triumphs radically revising old notions that Twitter and other social media work only for young millennials.  On Oct. 2, the Philadelphia Orchestra played to a full Verizon Hall on six hours' notice, aided by social media, after an engagement at Carnegie Hall was abruptly canceled. The strategy: Massive contacts via e-mail, Facebook, and Twitter.   Days before (Sept. 27), Opera Philadelphia drew 4,000 for an outdoor simulcast on Independence Mall of its season-opening Nabucco. Social media got the word out about the event. And once there, attendees tweeted their reactions on Twitter. The hashtag #onthemall was among the highest-trending tags in town that night.   That prompted the company's general director, David Devan, to consider establishing a "tweet zone" in the Academy of Music where listeners can do their electronic socializing during the show.  The point of social media, says Devan, is not the number of hits, but how the contacts generate discussion.   (Source: Philadelphia Inquirer)

  14. YouTube Close to Launching Subscription Music Service

    YouTube is preparing a premium on-demand music service -- akin to a Spotify, but with video -- to launch later this year.  The service, designed with mobile listening in mind, will have a free component and a premium tier that offers unlimited access to a full catalog of tracks similar to what's already available via YouTube's parent company, Google Inc., via its All Access subscription music service. Premium features would include the ability to cache music for offline listening and removing ads.  The free tier is likely to be unlimited, on-demand access to full tracks on all platforms, including mobile. In that sense, the paid tier is more of a "soft sell" as YouTube's primary goal is to continue to amass ears and eyes to its mobile platform to sell ads.   (Source: Billboard)

Youth, Education and Community

This section offers data and research on youth orchestras, music education, community engagement and more. For more information, visit the Youth, Education and Community section or check Advocacy and Government to see how you can become an advocate for music education.

Narrative Perspectives

This section offers a variety of insightful perspectives about the modern orchestra field.

National Arts Data

CPANDA, the Cultural Policy & the Arts National Data Archive, is the world's first interactive digital archive of policy-relevant data on the arts and cultural policy in the United States. It is a collaborative effort of Princeton University's Firestone Library and the Princeton Center for Arts and Cultural Policy Studies

Arts and Economic Prosperity
This study by American for the Arts documents the key role played by the nonprofit arts and culture industry, and their audiences, in strengthening our nation’s economy.

National Arts Index
This report by Americans for the Arts is a highly distilled annual measure of the health and vitality of arts in the United States by using 76 equal weighted, national-level indicators of arts activity. This report covers an 11-year period, from 1998 to 2008.

Performing Arts Research Coalition
The Performing Arts Research Coalition (PARC) brings together five major national service organizations (NSOs) in the performing arts to improve and coordinate the way performing arts organizations gather information on their sector. For further analysis, click here.

Orchestra Library Resources

  • MOLA (Major Orchestra Librarian Association) Resources
    Founded in 1983, the Major Orchestra Librarians' Association comprises of over 270 performance organizations around  the world, represented by more than 450 librarians. The job of these performance librarians is to acquire, prepare, catalogue and maintain the music for each institution. Through MOLA, librarians share information and resources to help them in their daily work.

  • The Edwin A. Fleisher Collection of Orchestral Music
    The world's largest lending library of orchestral performance material, with over 21,000 titles and growing. Owned by the Free Library of Philadelphia, you can hear pieces from the Fleisher Collection on the first Saturday of every month from 5:00 to 6:00 PM on WRTI-90.1 FM and wrti.org. Kile Smith, the Collection's curator co-hosts Discoveries from the Fleisher Collection, which “uncovers the unknown, rediscovers the little-known, and takes a fresh look at some of the remarkable treasures of the Fleisher Collection.” Visit fleisher.org or The Free Library to learn more.

  • BMI Repertoire Search
    BMI is the bridge between songwriters and the businesses and organizations that want to play their music publicly. As a global leader in music rights management, BMI serves as an advocate for the value of music, representing more than 8.5 million musical works created and owned by more than 600,000 songwriters, composers and music publishers.

  • ASCAP Repertoire Search
    The American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers (ASCAP) is a membership association of more than 470,000 US composers, songwriters, lyricists and music publishers of every kind of music. Through agreements with affiliated international societies, ASCAP also represent hundreds of thousands of music creators worldwide. They are the only US performing rights organization created and controlled by composers, songwriters and music publishers, with a Board of Directors elected by and from our membership.

  • SESAC Repertoire Search
    SESAC, Inc. was founded in 1930 to serve European composers not adequately represented in the United States. Though the company name was once an acronym, today it is simply SESAC and not an abbreviation of anything.  

    With an international reach and a vast repertory that spans virtually every genre of music, SESAC is the fastest growing and most technologically adept of the nation’s performing rights companies.

  • Composers You Should Know, from the Maag Library
    While this LibGuide was made primarily for Music History and Composition students, everyone can benefit from learning about at least a few representative composers from different time periods and countries.

  • Music Lending Library
    The Music Revitalization Project has a large selection of music and plan to continually expand our holdings. The lending library is offered to any area band, community or scholastic organization, within a fifty mile radius of Norton, MA.

Audience Engagement

This section offers research and studies designed to help orchestras grow and engage their audiences. For learning opportunities focused on audience engagement, visit Learning and Leadership Development.

Audience Engagement Research

Culture Track 2011
Design Thinking: The Art of Being Customer Focused
Engaging College Students in Classical Music
Findings from the New World Symphony


Culture Track 2011

LaPlaca Cohen's fifth installment of an ongoing national research study of the attitudes and behaviors of cultural audiences, examining trends in attendance at visual and performing arts events and the motivators and barriers that affect participation. With rapidly growing online communities, many institutions have struggled to realize or fully understand the potential of this shift in audience development. Culture Track 2011 addresses this concern head-on with informative and actionable research from which arts professionals can make informed decisions.

With several years of data now available, we examine year-to-year trends and also look into emerging areas of interest such as use of new media as information sources and entertainment. Culture Track 2011 was conducted with research partner, AMS Planning & Research, and incorporates findings from Culture Track 2007 and Making Culture Count, as the study was previously known when it was conducted between 2003 and 2005. View a video of the presentation.


 

Design Thinking: The Art of Being Customer-Focused

Taking a cue from businesses like Continuum and IDEO, organizations of all kinds are prioritizing customer satisfaction as a necessity to insure future viability. Orchestras have lots to learn around this practice, including developing quick, inexpensive experiments that let them prototype new experiences that increase customer loyalty. Come prepared to roll up your sleeves, use a different side of your brain, and try something new.

View the Presentation

Dan Buchner, director, Innovation, The Center for Creative Leadership; former vice president of organizational innovation, Continuum


Engaging College Students in Classical Music

Young adults in college represent a critical segment of the future audience for classical music. The musical experiences they have during these formative years lay the groundwork for a lifetime of musical involvement. What programming and engagement strategies might orchestras use to better reach college students? Learn from new research funded by The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. This paper highlights exemplary practices in student engagement, and explores ticketing, marketing, and programming strategies that are likely to surmount the many barriers that stand between college students and a deeper relationship with classical music.

Engaging Next Generation Audiences: A Study of College Student Preferences Toward Music and the Performing Arts

Alan Brown, principal, WolfBrown Associates
Joe Clifford, audience engagement director, Hopkins Center for the Arts Dartmouth College
Hollis Headrick, principal, Arts and Cultural Strategies


Findings from the New World Symphony

For the past five years the New World Symphony (NWS) has been presenting and researching alternate performance formats and their ability to attract and engage new audiences. This past season, the initiative expanded to include research with five U.S. orchestras also presenting alternate concert formats, and research of NWS’ first time ticket buyers from prior seasons. The results of their research, marketing, and PR efforts are in the report below.

View the presentation
Read the report

Michael Frisco, director of marketing, New World Symphony
Craig Hall, vice president for communications, New World Symphony

For more information, visit nws.edu.

 

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