Date of Graduation

Summer 2014


Master of Arts in Theatre


Theatre and Dance

Committee Chair

Christopher Herr


spectatorship theory, cultural competence, Millennials, survey, arts socialization, qualitative/quantitative data, theatrical event

Subject Categories

Theatre and Performance Studies


The purpose of this study is to generate empirical data about students in an introductory theatre class (THE 101)—and the nature of their communication with observed live theatrical performances. These students/Millennials present a necessary and unique opportunity for study because they are the presumptive spectators/audiences of tomorrow. This study generates an arts socialization profile about their theatre attendance and explores the efficacy of departmental programming and its relationship to future attendance predictors. From a sample of 264 students, a survey integrating both quantitative and qualitative questions was used to collect data about young theatre goers who are still developing their cultural competence and entertainment tastes. Approximately one third of students take THE 101 because of a predisposition to the arts and a majority feels that THE 101 prepares them for the experience of attending live theatre. The most important reason for attending live theatre is interest in the material and the biggest consideration is cost. The unique bond between spectator and live theatre is a complex and necessary construct.


© Derek Reid Munson

Campus Only