China's Live Entertainment Market Dominated by Women: Report

September 12, 2018  Editor: Wu Shanshan

The latest annual report on China's performing arts market highlights women's power while those born after 1995 are spending more money on live shows.

The China Association of Performing Arts and Alibaba Group's ticketing platform Damai.cn jointly released the "2017 China Performing Arts Market Annual Report" on Sunday. The data shows that the overall economic scale of the performing arts market in 2017 was 48.95 billion yuan (US$7.14 billion), an increase of 4.32 percent compared with the previous year's 46.92 billion yuan (US$6.84 billion). The total box office gross was 17.68 billion yuan (US$2.57 billion), up 5.2 percent from 2016.

In recent years, the pattern of China's live entertainment consumer market has been quietly changing, and the male-dominated consumption pattern is gradually being revitalized by the increasing demands of highly-educated and high-income women.

According to the report, female audiences of China's live entertainment account for 61 percent, far more than men especially in stage plays, musicals, concerts and ballet shows. Female consumers account for as much as 64 percent and their box office contribution is almost twice that of men. In terms of the education level of theater goers, 93 percent have a bachelor's degree or above.

In terms of age, the post-1995 generation's entertainment consumption increase is the fastest, especially for concerts, where almost three out of every ten audience members are young students. Yet, the strongest spending power remains with young and middle-aged individuals aged 25 to 39-year-old, accounting for 55 percent.

Live entertainment consumption has always had strong regional variations. The report shows that the audiences in South China and East China, represented by Guangzhou, Shanghai and Hangzhou, prefer concerts with a slightly higher average ticket price. The audiences in North China such as in Beijing and Tianjin tend towards stage plays and musicals, three times more compared to concerts. The Northeastern Chinese people are the ones who most prized folk shows.

In addition, the cross-regional audience continues to rise. In 2017, 31 percent of Damai.cn users were cross-city consumers, especially for the concert category, where 43 percent of audiences came from other places, while theater stage shows attracted more local consumers. The proportion of cross-city attendance was less than 20 percent.

The report also shows that in 2017 the number of large-scale concerts and music festival performances totaled 2,400, an increase of 14.29 percent compared with the year before, and the box office income was 3.76 billion yuan (US$549.12 million), 7.91 percent higher than the year before; theater performances totaled 93,000 shows, compared a rise of 5.48 percent with 2016 and the box office income was 7.72 billion yuan (US$1.12 billion), an increase of 4.27 percent year-on-year.

According to the report, people are increasingly using mobile payment and electronic tickets to attend shows, such as Asia's biggest game show Chinajoy held in Shanghai and the Qingdao Beer Festival held in Dalian. Show-goers can now scan a QR code to get enter venues, which greatly simplifies the admission process. This also plays an important preventive role in deterring criminals and ticket touts who speculate and sell fake tickets, which will help to further standardize the ticket market.

In addition, the report also shows that cloud computing and face recognition technology are also widely used in large-scale events such as concerts and carnivals. Apps, equipment-free ticket checks and real-time audience flow analysis are building a new business model for the live entertainment industry.

(Source: China Daily)

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