Attendance and Engagement

Some groups have lower arts participation

Research shows that people with disabilities, people from non-English speaking backgrounds, people from lower socio-economic groups and older Australians (65+) continue to have lower participation rates than other Australians.

The figure below illustrates the size of these groups and their participation levels relative to the Australian population. It shows that:

  • Those with a long term illness or disability are the furthest away from the average Australian in terms of arts participation
  • Low creative participation is a particular issue for older Australians (aged 65+)
  • ·Low attendance is a particular issue for those with long term illness or disability, or whose main language is not English
  • Males have only slightly lower engagement, but account for the largest underrepresented group (i.e. half the population).

In practice some of these factors overlap, and so we find more than half of those over 65 years have a household income of less than $40k, and a quarter of this group have a serious illness or disability.

Figure 55 - Participation rates among key demographic segments

GroupCreative Participation %Attendance %Receptive Participation
(including reading) %
All Australians487194
Males476991
Household Income under $40k445890
Main language not English405989
Primary School highest qualification436083
Long term illness or disability495988
Over 65 years396290