Update for April 25, 2022: Alan’s April 25 briefing highlights results from this week’s survey deployments to three national cohorts of theatres, orchestras and performing arts centers. Will perceptions of rising infection rates between March and April cause another regression in readiness to attend? Has demand continued its post-Omicron recovery? This update will focus on indicators of support for masking requirements, reasons why people are claiming that advance planning is more difficult than it used to be, and what people are saying about how their ‘cultural diet” has changed because of the pandemic. (30 minutes)
The dramatic post-Omicron recovery halted in April
Most indicators of readiness to return held steady or regressed a bit between March and April
As most infections are likely not reported in gov’t figures, the “case data” that people used to access to make decisions is no longer reliable; instead people are looking at hospitalizations and deaths, which remain low
Orchestras and theatres are still looking at 65% to 70% of a reactivated customer base, while PACs are still looking at 75% to 80% of a reactivated customer base, on average (no change)
We have not yet broken through the pre-Delta “ceiling” of comfortability attending large venues
Attitudes about mask mandates held steady between March and April
Some support is evident in open-ends for dropping proof of vaccine requirement before dropping mask requirement
About 40% to 50% are already going out, but haven’t “found” the sending organization’s programs
Roughly 35% to 40% cite health concerns (i.e., 10% to 14% of all respondents); many of these are “long-term non-returners” – they’ll come back slowly, if at all
Between 20% and 30% say that making advance plans to go out is more difficult now
If the BA.2 Omicron subvariants continue to spread across the US, we are likely to be in a holding pattern for several months – will this “surge” be a non-event?
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