Each year, TCG conducts a comprehensive Fiscal Survey, which is the basis for Theatre Facts, TCG’s annual in-depth theatre field report. Available to all member theatres, as well as the general public, Theatre Facts is the only document analyzing the U.S. professional not-for-profit theatre and is a vital resource for theatre professionals, trustees, funders, policy makers, educators and the press.
For inquiries about Theatre Facts, including obtaining reports from prior to 2000, please email Ilana B. Rose, associate director of research & collective action.
Theatre Facts 2013
Based on TCG Fiscal Survey 2013, which covered the fiscal year that theatres completed anytime between October 31, 2012 and September 30, 2013, Theatre Facts 2013 provides three lenses through which to view the not-for-profit theatre field’s attendance, performance and fiscal health: A broad overview of the estimated 1,773 U.S. not-for-profit professional theatres (the “Universe”), a longitudinal analysis of the 115 theatres that completed the Fiscal Survey each year since 2009 (“Trend Theatres”); and a detailed examination of the 176 theatres that completed Fiscal Survey 2013 (“Profiled Theatres”), broken out into six budget categories.
For the Trend Theatres, the 5-year period saw a shift from negative average CUNA (the Change in Unrestricted Net Assets, or balance that remains after subtracting total expenses from total unrestricted income) in 2009 to average CUNA just above break-even in 2013. Earned income had robust growth, driven by the recovery of the stock market and growth across multiple earned revenue streams. Single ticket income growth surpassed inflation and remains the largest source of earned income. While subscription income was lower in 2013 than in 2009, it has risen annually since 2010 and the number of season ticket holders rose in both 2012 and 2013. Contributed income declined over the 5-year period, with growth in contributions from individuals and fundraising events being the only areas to outpace inflation. Expense growth was moderate over the 5-year period. Average working capital—the unrestricted resources available to meet day-to-day obligations and cash needs—was negative and great cause for concern in each of the past 5 years.
Read the Theatre Facts 2013 Press Release.
Previous Reports (PDFs):
- Theatre Facts 2012 report and Press Release
- Theatre Facts 2011 report and Press Release
- Theatre Facts 2010 report and Press Release
- Theatre Facts 2009 report and Press Release
- Theatre Facts 2008 report and Press Release
- Theatre Facts 2007 report and Press Release
- Theatre Facts 2006 report and Press Release
- Theatre Facts 2005 report and Press Release
- Theatre Facts 2004 report and Press Release
- Theatre Facts 2003
- Theatre Facts 2002
- Theatre Facts 2001
- Theatre Facts 2000
American Theatre Articles
A narrative version of Theatre Facts, featuring anecdotes from prominent managing leaders in the field, is published annually in American Theatre magazine.
Theatre Facts 2013 shows companies are taking smart steps to regain their economic footing after the Great Recession. Celia Wren's story on Theatre Facts 2013—TCG's annual analysis of the fiscal state of the American not-for-profit theatre—was featured in the November 2014 issue of American Theatre.
With the worst of the recession behind them, theatre leaders must lay plans for an unpredictable future. Sarah Hart's story on Theatre Facts 2012—TCG's annual analysis of the fiscal state of the American not-for-profit theatre—was featured in the November 2013 issue of American Theatre.
Sarah Hart's story on Theatre Facts 2011—TCG's annual analysis of the fiscal state of the American not-for-profit theatre—shows how theatres are deftly negotiating the bumps and curves of an economy in flux. This article was featured in the November 2012 issue of American Theatre.
Ingenuity and Flexibility are Theatres' Aces in the Hole for Maneuvering a Distressed Economy. Sarah Hart's story on Theatre Facts 2010—TCG's annual analysis of the fiscal state of the American not-for-profit theatre—shows how the theare field is adjusting to life in a new landscape, one that increasingly demands austerity, but one that also engenders imagination and ingenuity. This article was featured in the November 2011 issue of American Theatre.
U.S. Theatres Stave Off Crises With Clever Strategies and Strong Programming. Featured in the November 2010 issue of American Theatre, Sarah Hart's story on Theatre Facts 2009—TCG's annual analysis of the fiscal state of the American not-for-profit theatre—shows how many theatres turned the enormous challenges of the economic recession into an opportunity to refocus and find clarity in mission statements, branding, financial practices and staffing structures.
It's impossible not to look for harbingers of economic crises to come in the Theatre Facts 2008, TCG's annual analysis of the fiscal state of the American not-for-profit theatre. This full article (pdf) was featured in the November 2009 issue of American Theatre.
Anticipating Hard Times, The Field is Buttressed by Strong Numbers. Celia Wren examines the upbeat news in Theatre Facts 2007 in relation to the gloomy economic developments of recent months. The full article is featured in the November 2008 issue of American Theatre.
Celia Wren's report from the field shows that "the forecast is neither foul nor fair—and theatres are planning accordingly." Drawing on the findings of Theatre Facts 2006, the full article is featured in the November 2007 issue of American Theatre.
Is the glass half full or half empty? Featured in the November 2006 issue of American Theatre and based on the findings of Theatre Facts 2005, Celia Wren's article explores both the continued recovery of the nation's not-for-profit theatres and the worrisome omens that recovery harbors.
As-yet-untried strategies may be the key to maintaining artistic gains—even in the face of cutbacks and audience uncertainty. Ben Pesner's article, based on the findings of Theatre Facts 2004, is featured in the November 2005 issue of the re-designed American Theatre.
It certainly wasn't the best of times; but then, it wasn't the worst of times either. That's the impression one might get when sifting through tables and charts in Theatre Facts 2003, the latest installment in TCG's annual survey of the financial health of the national not-for-profit theatre field. Published in the November 2004 issue.
While Theatre Facts 2002 covers the effects of the immediate aftermath of 9/11 and the economic recession, there was some good news. According to the article, "The data about the 1,146 Universe Theatres is particularly impressive: Collectively, these theatres sold an estimated 32.2 million tickets to 157,000 performances of 10,000 productions. Theatre Facts estimates that these institutions, which employ 109,000 individuals, generated $1.4 billion in direct expenditure to the U.S. economy in 2002. No small potatoes." By Ben Pesner. Originally published in the November 2003 issue.
TCG's Theatre Facts 2001 tracks the field's course through a troubled year of economic downturns. Survey is pre-9/11. By Stephen Nunns. Originally published in the September 2002 issue.
TCG's Theatre Facts 2000 looks at the field in the final year of the 20th century. By Linda Geeson. Originally published in the September 2001 issue.