November 30, 2022

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The audience's trip to the theaters

The audience’s trip to the theaters

There have been tough years for the culture industry, as well as in Bergen, and they still seem to be.

review by Bergens Tidende (BT) shows that there are still more empty seats in theaters than expected, and tens of thousands of spectators were absent compared to the years before the Corona pandemic.

34,000 spectators lost

For example, Den Nationale Scene (DNS) sold 91,654 tickets as of October 25 in 2019, while sales for the same period in 2022 were 57,230 tickets.

That means more than 34,000 fewer theater visits to the DNS so far this year, despite big investments such as David Bowie’s musical “Lazarus” and Knausgård’s “Morgenstjernen” work.

But DNS isn’t alone in having more vacant seats than usual. The Vestnorske Teateret Theatre, Fyllingsdalen Theatre, Ole Bull Theatre, and Ricks Theatre have also seen a drop in visitor numbers.

– Absolutely all regulators seemed to be overly optimistic, and thought the public would turn wild when coronary strictures were finally a thing of the past, Terje Clausen of Rick’s Teater tells BT.

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– Knows a little about the wallet

Marie Russo, president of the Theater and Theater Trade Guild, told Dagbladet that she believes there are several reasons why people are reluctant to go to theatres.

We are getting feedback from multiple people that it seems to be taking time to reverse the habits people have had during the pandemic. We’ve heard that audiences are waiting to buy tickets for the same week or day before the show. Røsjø says it might be a little more difficult to get people off the couch now.

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She also believes that many people are noticing that we are in a time of rising costs.

“I think most people know more about their wallets these days, and may be a little more careful than before,” says Røsjø.

The union leader continues to say that she cannot say definitively whether the decline in Bergen stands out compared to the rest of the country.

But she believes she has noticed geographic differences in how easy it is to get people back into the halls.

My impression, without doing any formal cartography, is that there are greater geographical differences now than before. In some places they say it’s still tough, while in others it’s getting better, says Røsjø.

This is different from the time before the pandemic, believes Røsjø, who says she felt interested in theater entertainment and was geographically evenly distributed at the time.