Dollars and sense
The uptake of consumer technology and a concurrent thirst for free quality content poses legal and financial challenges. Large organisations are also being challenged to connect with communities differently. The continued rise of the sharing economy and scepticism towards big business, government and institutions are changing audience expectations. As a result, many organisations are emphasising community engagement to grow audiences, share knowledge and increase long-term market relevance.
Funding models for arts organisations differ significantly across the globe as the proportion of government subsidies decreases, especially for smaller companies. This trend has led to increased reliance on private funding such as philanthropy and sponsorship as a source of income, and a more competitive market for it. Private funding will necessarily continue to be a key growth area for funding arts product and is dependent on the cultivation and maintenance of key relationships.
The rise of ticket resale sites and an increase in scalping are contributing to financial uncertainty for venues and affecting the underlying market dynamics. While legislation is being developed in NSW to address these issues, scalping is likely to be a challenge for venues and presenters into the foreseeable future.
Sydney’s cultural landscape is evolving in step with the city’s development in infrastructure and population growth and make-up. Sydneysiders have a healthy mix of performing arts venues, resulting in a highly competitive market. A clear understanding of the Opera House’s market position will support effective strategic decision-making over the next three to five years.
Although the Opera House is often the first choice for artists because of its international renown, we cannot be complacent. We must work hard to ensure artists choose to work with us over other existing and newly established venues in Sydney.