Live Music

Spend on live music almost doubles in last decade to over £2bn

Featured Image: Colin Lloyd on Unsplash

Featured Image: Colin Lloyd on Unsplash

Spending on live music in the UK surpassed £2bn (€2.3bn/$2.6bn) for the first time in 2022, an increase on pre-pandemic 2019.

According to an article from Will Page, who was previously the chief economist for Spotify and PRS for Music, for Music Business Worldwide, box office spending (the amount spent on tickets) was up 22% in 2022 vs 2019. 

This was despite the fact that the number of live music events was down 26% from 2019 to 2022.  

The article reveals that compared to 2019, UK stadium and festival shows in 2022 were down 14% in volume, arenas were down 22% and theatres were down 43%. With the increase in box office spending, Page reported that this is akin to productivity gain. He added that this could be driven by supply in terms of higher ticket prices or demand, with inflation also playing a role. 

Page also noted that stadium shows and festivals have witnessed a period of extreme growth, with Wembley hosting more concerts than football matches and welcoming over 1.3 million guests. He also revealed that music in the UK stadiums and festivals also made up half of all box office spend, which in 2019 only equated to 40%. 

Going back to 2012, annual UK live music spend equated to £1.2bn, with stadium gigs and festivals generating 23% of that figure, meaning spend has almost doubled in the last decade. 

Page told TheTicketingBusiness: “This is bounce back Britain – spend on music in ’22 was up by almost a billion on pre-pandemic 2019. I’m confident that live will not only survive but thrive during these tough economic times, as the industry has raised its game to compete for the experience economy.”