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MAJOR PERFORMING ARTS SECTOR CONSOLIDATES STEADY GROWTH

Australia’s 29 major performing arts companies continue to show steady growth across key financial and artistic indicators, according to the latest report from the Australia Council for the Arts.

The Securing the Future report showed that in 2006 the companies achieved 2.1 million capital city mainstage attendances, mounted 68 new mainstage works, raised approximately $152.2 million at the box office and presented 4400 education performances to 708,000 students.

The annual Securing the Future report has tracked the progress of flagship theatre, dance, opera and orchestral companies since 2001 against indicators established by the Australian Government’s Major Performing Arts Inquiry of 1999.

Australia Council chief executive Kathy Keele said the results represented a continuation of the strong gains made across the sector over the previous six years.

‘The 29 companies have consolidated the strong artistic and financial gains they have made since the Major Performing Arts Inquiry,’ Kathy said.

The Australia Council’s executive director major performing arts Tony Grybowski noted the report showed marginal declines in the number of new Australian works and private sector income compared with the previous year.

Tony Grybowski said: ‘We believe that increased support flowing from the funding model review last year will help relieve these pressures.’

‘But the simple fact remains that all the companies are in much better shape now than they were seven years ago, having achieved particularly strong growth in box office and private income,’ Tony said.

In 2006-07, the 29 major performing arts companies received more than $97.6 million in Australian Government funding through the Australia Council for the Arts.

The Australian and state governments accepted 89 recommendations of the Major Performing Arts Inquiry, addressing issues of artistic vibrancy, access, financial viability and transparency of funding in the sector.

The recommendations were implemented by the Australia Council’s major performing arts board, in consultation with state governments, between 2000 and 2005.

A copy of the Securing the Future report is available for download.

Media contact: Andrew Parker 0402 936 466

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