SOLT Box Office data for 2022 makes for interesting reading

Ticket prices remain flat whilst costs rise is the headline message from the release of 2022 box office figures for SOLT’s London commercial and subsidised theatre sector members.

This is the first full set of annual figures published since 2019, as the onset of the pandemic and subsequent shutdowns disrupted data reporting in 2020 and 2021.

2022 has been widely recognised as a financially challenging year for businesses across the UK, and the theatre industry has been no exception.

Despite rising costs – not least significant increases in energy bills – producers and theatres have worked to ensure that productions remain accessible to as many people as possible. The average nominal ticket price has only risen by £2.21 since 2019, with the average price actually falling in real terms when adjusted for inflation from £52.17 in 2019 to £48.11 in 2022.

The reopening of venues closed for restoration and refurbishment in 2019, as well as fewer ‘dark’ weeks in venues contributed to a 7.9% increase in total capacity (available seats) compared to 2019, with the number of overall individual performances increasing by 4.7%. A combination of these factors contributed to a 7.1% increase in attendance in 2022.

This increased attendance has seen nominal revenue increase by 11.6% to £892,896,521 in 2022. However, adjusted for inflation since 2019, real revenue has fallen by 1.1%.

Although there has been a slight, yet encouraging increase of attendance in the West End, UK-wide theatre audience levels have not fully recovered since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic.

For more information, visit SOLT’s website here


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