ACHF Arts Access
Between fiscal year 2013 and 2016, Fine Arts Programming at Saint John’s University will steadily increase accessibility, participation, and attendance by off-campus, central Minnesota community members at our performances, exhibitions, and residency activities. Our goal is to grow the overall participation rate of the off-campus community by 30% by 2016. We will be able to measure this gain through ticket reports, residency evaluations, and attendance rates at public events. Fine Arts Programming tracks attendance at performances, residency activities, and exhibitions. We saw a sharp increase over projected attendance rates, due primarily to our partnership with GREAT Theater. In fiscal year 2013, Fine Arts Programming hired an outside consultant to conduct focus groups of off-campus community members. We then implemented marketing changes, such as increased branding ads and more aggressive messaging of our lower ticket prices, based upon the feedback, in order to attract more off-campus participation. Sales at several Saint John's University performances in fiscal year 2013 came in lower than projected and, to address this Saint John's University has made other changes, such as adjusting performance times and booking larger, more recognizable names.
Example of strategies implemented to meet the goal of 30% participation increase of off-campus community include: Fine Arts Programming developed a strategic partnership with Great River Educational Arts Theater that benefits both organizations. Great River Educational Arts Theater has a large, loyal regional audience and partnering with them has created a symbiotic relationship. We are good fiscal partners for Great River Educational Arts Theater, providing venue and marketing support without charging a rental fee, and presenting them in our venues helps us draw off-campus audiences into our spaces and familiarize them with attending performances at Saint John's University. We receive a percentage of Great River Educational Arts Theater's ticket income, so our income is tied directly to their success.
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