Study: B’way road shows aren’t drawing new auds

Research finds average age of a road audience member was 51

The League of American Theaters and Producers’ biennial demographic study on audiences of touring Broadway shows gives further credence to some stereotypes: Road auds have become increasingly older, whiter and more female.

Study, which took data from the 2003-04 season, found that the average age of a road audience member was 51, up from 48 two years prior. In comparison, the average age of an attendee of a Broadway show during the same period decreased to 42 from 44. Only 3.1% of road auds during the 2003-04 season were under 18, as compared to 11.2% on Broadway.

Women made up 72.3% of the audience in 2003-04, up from 70.3% two seasons prior. The percentage on Broadway was only 62.8% in 2003-04, up a hair from 62.6% two years ago.

Caucasians made up 91.8% of the road audience, as compared with 85.5% two years before. On Broadway, the percentage fell to 80.1% from 81.4%.

Another change was that 50% of road auds were subscribers to a series of five or so shows, as compared with only 36% two seasons earlier. The average respondent attended 6.7 productions, a slight rise over the past few years.

Twenty-six percent of the touring audience also attended a show on Broadway in New York.

According to the study, 12.4 million tickets were sold during the 2003-04 road season, generating more than $700 million in revenue.