How do today’s teens become the next generation of urban art fans and event-goers? TeenTix is easing the way in Seattle. Founded in 2004 by Seattle Center and in partnership with 10 arts organizations on its campus, it draws teens away from smartphones and into venues to experience symphony, opera, ballet and film.
What’s their secret to success? TeenTix members shared insights with Brown Paper Tickets on how to nurture and engage future generations of culture consumers. Aside from their heavily discounted teen event pass, there’s more to learn.
1. What attracts teens to arts events and to arts involvement?
According to TeenTix members, already being a part of some form of art or performance activity at school seems to be key in attending arts activities outside of school. As well, the reduced price of tickets through TeenTix is crucial for helping students find arts participation accessible. In their words:
“I think being part of some form of art at school (such as being in band, orchestra, choir, art class, etc) has a significant influence on attending art events outside of school.”
“I aspire to one day be a stage manager so I like going to plays to see a good story and observe how the show is tech-ed.”
2. How does social media influence teens to attend arts events?
TeenTix members agreed that social media is key for learning about and sharing arts events. Part of the fun and motivation for attending is in seeing what arts organizations others have “liked,” or which events friends are headed to. In their words:
“Almost all teens are on Facebook so when you see an event being promoted on Facebook, you are more likely to tell your friends and kind of show off that you are going to something that looks cool!”
“Not only is [social media] an effective means of spreading the word about the event, it also is a way to see which of your friends are going…”