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Deep Dive: "Vaccinated but Reluctant: A Close Examination of Who’s Not Ready to Go Out"

June 7, 2021 - With an overwhelming proportion of visitors and audience members already vaccinated, this session will focus on the still substantial pool of vaccinated folks who are not yet ready to go out, what we know from qualitative research about their concerns, how quickly their concerns are likely to dissipate or persevere, and what arts groups can do to keep them engaged. Guests: Alan Brown, Principal, WolfBrown, Surale Phillips, Independent Researcher and Consultant

Several questions were submitted during the session, which Alan has addressed below.

Jo Manley: Have you surveyed since the CDC guidelines changed?

Alan Brown: Yes. We made a number of adjustments to the survey protocol after the CDC announced the new guidelines in May, including new questions about mask requirements and vaccinated-only admittance policies. The new questions were fielded by five of our cohorts the week of June 9, and other cohorts will field the questions in July. Results were covered in my 30-minute Executive Briefing on June 14. The recording is available on the website.

Lara Goetsch: Do we think these numbers about vulnerable household members may be related to children who are not able to be vaccinated in the home? Vs. fear for self even if vaccinated?

Alan Brown: I think it’s a combination of all of those factors: people who have legitimate health concerns or medical conditions (e.g., immunocompromised folks) that prevent them from getting vaccinated or generating antibodies; people who have unvaccinated family members (of any age); people who are caregivers to vulnerable people and cannot risk transmitting the virus even if vaccinated; and of course there are undoubtedly some people in this group who simply have a heightened sense of vulnerability that is not necessarily rooted in a specific condition.

Jo Manley: Have you ever surveyed people about being unwilling to return if they are required to wear masks?

Alan Brown: Yes. This question was added to the protocol for June and July. I cover this topic in my 30-minute Executive Briefing on June 14. The recording is available on the website.

--- CHAT LOG -------------------------------------------------------------------

Ron Evans: Welcome, everyone. We look forward to having you join us at the session!

Ron Evans: Welcome, everyone - please say hello in the chat and tell us where you're from in the world.

Ron Evans: Rainy in Eugene, Oregon today!

Alan Brown: Greetings from the Motor City

Jo Manley: Hi from Marin Theatre Company

Kim Howard: Hello from CultureSource in Detroit!

Tom Stoll: Tom here from The Ark in Ann Arbor, MI

Mark Marston: Hello from Pittsburgh Opera

Jennifer Lin: Hello from Metro Theater Company in St. Louis

Derek January: Hello from the Mattress Factory in Pittsburgh

Rachel Rearick: Greetings from Contemporary Craft, in Pittsburgh

Caitlin: Hi from Yale Rep in New Haven, CT

Ilana Barker: Hi from the Flint Institute of Music

Ron EvansWelcome, everyone!

Jocelyn Meyer: Hi from Ensemble Theatre Cincinnati

Anthony Kayer: Hello from Lifeline Theatre, Chicago!

Kerstin Adams: Hi from Steppenwolf Theatre in Chicago!

Alan Kline: Greetings from WolfBrown's Rocky Mountain outpost

Ron Evans: If you have questions on what you see today, use the "Ask a question" feature at the bottom of the screen, and Alan and Surale will email you an answer after the session.

Peter Chenot: Hello from TheatreWorks Silicon Valley in the Bay Area!

Nicholas Peterson: hi from Central Square Theater in Cambridge, MA.

Ron Evans: If the video feeds are showing on top of the slides, please drag your browser window larger, or maximize your screen. That should fix it.

Susan Weiler: Hello from Susan Weiler from Global Arts Live. Sorry to be a little late!

Alexandra Skoczylas: Hey from Toronto!

Ron Evans: You'll want to grab your phone, and go to and put in the code 11638530

Ron Evans: Nice, folks. Rockin' the Menti!

Jo Manley: Maybe this is the difference between restaurants and theatre/performance venue: in a restaurant you're likely not sitting NEXT TO "a stranger" as you would be in a theatre. You're likely sitting with family/friends whose vaccination status you're sure of.....?

Alan Brown: Great point, Jo.

Alan Brown: The fear factor is lower, perhaps, in a restaurant setting.

Russ Collins: Most movie theaters are open and movie theater attendance is improving significantly each week. They also want concessions sales, which was a surprise.

Maure Aronson: How do we explain sports events both indoors and outdoors filled to capacity. 20,000 indoor basketball and hockey fans packed and sitting next to people that they do not know. Does not seem to be any hesitancy from sports fans to gather.

Alan Brown: Well, I think there's a different risk profile

Russ Collins: Science is saying, "We (vaccinated) have nothing to fear but fear itself" (to paraphrase from an earlier era of fear). Seems we need to trust this fact and let facts not fear inform our decisions.

Derek January: One way we have found that really helps to get feedback on how we have been handling visitation at the museum during COVID is that we began sending out post-visit surveys to visitors a week after their visit. It has given us lots of insights into safety concerns, accessibility concerns, capacity measures, etc.

David: we need to do better

Alexandra Skoczylas: Here in Canada we are not anywhere near 100% vaccination. So we are quite a bit behind the US audiences...

Sara Billmann: Will the reverse also be true? People who get sick after being vaccinated and have very minor symptoms?

Ron Evans: Thank you for joining us, all. The replay will be available right here in about 5 minutes. We'll email out answers to the submitted questions shortly.

Tom Hitchman: Hello from Great Lakes Chamber Music Festival. Thanks for the valuable insights.

Alexandra Skoczylas: Thanks for this - so helpful.


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