Fall season ticket sales show promise for Michigan's arts organizations
Chelsea Sadler is with the Performance Network Theatre in Ann Arbor. She says "theaters across the country and in this area definitely saw a decline in sales and donations when the economy was really hurt a couple years. And I think that we’re now at a point where everyone’s starting to recover from that."
So much so that Sadler's theater had their most successful box office this past season - with sales up 13%. Sadler attributes the uptick in sales to better advertising and strong programming.
Hogle projects ticket sales will be "somewhere between 75% - 78% sold on our classical concerts," compared to around 63% of tickets sold the year before the strike.
Several arts leaders are hopeful this is a sign the economy is recovering. To quote Grand Rapids Ballet director Glenn Del Vecchio: "All indications at the moment are that things feel pretty good."
But it’s not all coming up roses. It seems people are less willing to commit to a full season. Many arts groups say they’ve seen a big drop off in the number of subscriptions they’ve sold. Performance Network, which saw a 12% increase in subscription sales last season, is the exception.