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Audience Building for Theater Festivals

Student: Mariia Kulakova

Supervisor: Julia Trabskaya

Faculty: St.Petersburg School of Economics and Management

Educational Programme: Experience Economy: Hospitality and Tourism Management (Master)

Year of Graduation: 2020

This master's thesis is devoted to the study of methods of audience formation at theater festivals. The purpose of the study is to identify and systematize methods for attracting new and young audiences to theater festivals. The study identified the following tasks: - determine the main characteristics of the audience of theater festivals; - identify the features of attracting audiences to theater festivals; - determine the main criteria of the festival that affect audience engagement; - identify methods of attracting young audiences to major theater festivals in Russia and abroad; - systematize methods of attracting an audience; - make recommendations to attract new and young audiences. In the first chapter, an analysis of relevant literature was carried out. It included an analysis of the organization of theater festivals, methods of formation and developing an audience, and features of interaction with a youth audience. The second chapter describes methods of practical research (expert interviews, online survey, content analysis of festival web-sites, correlation analysis). An expert interview revealed the factors of attractiveness of the theater festival for a young audience. The online survey allowed us to determine the characteristics of the audience. Based on data from the literature, results of expert interviews and online surveys, a content analysis of 30 foreign and 30 Russian festival web-sites was conducted. At the final stage of the study, a Pearson correlation analysis was performed to identify the relationships between the characteristics of the festival. As a result of the research, the main methods of attracting audiences to theater festivals were identified. Based on the results of the study, recommendations were developed for organizers of theater festivals to attract a wide and young audience. Keywords: theater festival, young audience, methods of attracting, audience characteristics.

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