Seattle Area Teenagers Bought Over 10,000 $5 Tickets to the Arts in 2013

TeenTix, a Seattle-based arts access program for teenagers, has announced that it facilitated the sale of 10,689 five-dollar arts tickets to teens in 2013.

TeenTix engages a consortium of Puget Sound region arts organizations in a collective effort to welcome and engage young audience members through a host of strategies, including making it possible for any 13- to 19-year-old to buy a five-dollar, day-of-event ticket. TeenTix currently has 53 partner arts organizations throughout the region, from flagship institutions like Pacific Northwest Ballet, Seattle Repertory Theatre, Seattle Art Museum, Seattle Symphony, Seattle Opera, EMP Museum, ACT Theatre, Town Hall, and 5th Avenue Theatre, to smaller, community-based organizations like Taproot Theatre, CD Forum, Seattle Chamber Music Society, and Renton Civic Theatre. For a full list of TeenTix partners, visit www.teentix.org/partners.

Since being founded as a public program of Seattle Center in 2004, TeenTix has facilitated the sale of just under 45,000 arts tickets to teens. "This means that teenage arts patrons have contributed almost $225,000 in revenue to our local arts economy over the past ten years," says TeenTix Executive Director Holly Arsenault. "And it's important to remember that that's only counting TeenTix ticket sales themselves." TeenTix estimates that its members have spent an additional $727,650 on things like parking, meals, and concessions while attending arts events over the past ten years, and that TeenTix members and their parents are additionally responsible for about $675,000 in advance student and adult ticket sales over the last decade, above and beyond their five-dollar TeenTix purchases.

Arsenault says she hopes that these numbers drive home the point that young people are a robust and growing patron block who merit serious consideration by our region's artistic leaders. "You won't find an artistic leader in this city-probably in this country-who isn't concerned with attracting younger, more diverse audiences. But our sector has a major data deficit when it comes to patrons under 18. We don't count them, and we don't study them. We don't know what they want and need, and we can't hope to serve them that way. TeenTix exists to advocate for young arts audiences." By sharing these numbers, Arsenault says that TeenTix aims to "elevate the status" of young arts patrons to the point where artistic leaders begin to feel comfortable considering them when making programming choices.

"When I started working with TeenTix in 2005, there was still a lot of skepticism about whether teens cared about art at all. Nobody's skeptical about that anymore; not in Seattle. I feel really proud of that fact."

TeenTix is currently in the second year of a three-year transition out of Seattle Center and into an independent organization.

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