How much do you spend on live performances in a year?

How much do you spend on live performances in a year?
$0 to $100
17% (11 votes)
$100 to $500
43% (28 votes)
$500 to $1000
26% (17 votes)
$1000 to $2500
8% (5 votes)
$2500 to $5000
5% (3 votes)
$5000 to $10,000
2% (1 vote)
$10,000 to $20,000
0% (0 votes)
Over $20,000
0% (0 votes)
Total votes: 65

After last week's question about money spent on recorded music each year, reader Joe Hartmann wants to know how much do you spend on live performances in a year?

David L.  Wyatt jr.'s picture

Partial season subscription to the Columbus Symphony Orchestra, contributions for the free concerts at my church (http://www.first-church/org) and its trio of pipe organs, and then there's the blues bands at the local bar, the Dregs, Adrian Belew, yadda, yadda, yadda. One can never spend enough time listening to musicians, or performing.

Joe Hartmann's picture

I retired two years ago. Living in the New York City area, the marketplace is wonderful. I have mini subscriptions for the NY Philamonic, the Met Opera, and I have subscribed to the NYC Ballet since 1972. I have to say that now time is on my side. My 1st NY Phil included Mahler 1. I looked forward to the day, but could not believe what I heard. I have a quite a bit invested in my system but I do not even come close. I can not wait for Anne Sophie Mutter next week.

Aden's picture

I wish I spent more than $200. I love live performances, but I really just don't have the time or inclination to go out—sitting at home with a glass of wine is just so much more enjoyable than having to battle traffic, find parking, battle crowds, queue up, then spend the entire performance sitting next to some diseased fat person. Am I a prude?

DAB, Pacific Palisades, CA's picture

$5K-10K would be a "cheap" year for my family and I. Yes; THAT'S the life!

RF's picture

$500 seems about right, if one doesn't include drinks at the bar that don't charge a cover.

Tuna's picture

At this point in my journey, I like more relaxed atmospheres, and large, densely packed crowds just don't get it. We hit a folk festival each summer and maybe a blues fest, but casual is key, now.

suits_me's picture

Probably just over $100 because I go to music schools' free recitals, get coupons for cheep baroque ensemble, amateur chorales and world stuff, and in addition make sure to stop and listen whenever I see Joshua Bell fiddling in my subway station. Hey, I'm frugal and in no particular hurry.

Tony P., Arlington, VA's picture

Again, I think your categories are too broad. I probably spend around $500 on concert tickets most years, some years a bit more, some -- a bit less. So where do I fit in?

Dave in Milwaukee's picture

Add 50% if you count the beer ... quite an accomplishment with ticket prices often in the $75 range.

J Chisholm's picture

Every now and then I feel the need to re-calibrate my hearing, so I go to a live concert.

Andrew Chester's picture

Average spend is between £5-£10 ($10-$20) here in the UK. Try to see an act a week -small scale performance than stupid priced arena show (The Police have reformed- what's the problem, didn't they get a pension plan?)

tony sublett's picture

I go to a couple of rock concerts and a couple of symphony performances every year. If I had more vacation time, I'd go more often than that.

Mike_K's picture

Washington National Opera subscription: $1330 National Symphony Orchestra subscription: $1733

Mike Agee's picture

Hate to say this, having been a commited attendee of numerous concerts through the years (Ah, Steely Dan opening for Frank Zappa, Lincoln, Nebraska '72) and being very lucky to come out with decent hearing (Euthanasia, NYC club, '78. I swear my hair blew back like the Memorex commercial), I now restrict my live listening to chamber music et al, and even there, the ladies' perfume too frequently gets in the way. Amplified shows just seem too amplified these days and earplugs are like the proverbial raincoat in the shower; I want to listen till the end and that means limiting rock concerts. Then again, if Doves come to town . . .

Louis P.'s picture

Carnegie Hall subscriptions get more expensive each year, but it's worth it. OTOH, geezer rock concerts that cost close to $100 for nosebleed seats are losing their appeal to me.

WalkerTM's picture

You do not need to spend much on good live music there is a lot of it out there for free. Wish I could say that for recorded music.

douglas p.'s picture

With three kids at home, my concert going days are on indefinite hold. Besides, hardly anyone performs anything like close to where I live and the "name" concerts in KC cost too much anyway. Thank goodness for my music making machinery and my CD collection (1800-plus)!

Freeloader's picture

Free Downloads Baby!

meat_man999's picture

I wish I had more free time to see more live performances.

Francisco Valery, Venezuela's picture

Like the guys at Stereophile (that can hear the best without paying for it) I´m lucky:I attend more than 40 live performances a year (including Pavarotti, Simon Rattle, Claudio Abbado, etc)anywhere in the world for nothing, because I´m the medical doctor of the National Symphonic Youth Orchestra of Venezuela. In the last 7 years my ears got better than ever and my equipment (+15.000$ )sounds... well, only like equipment!

richtan's picture

I spend money for live music simply because my audio setups—though these are very high end state of the arts and among Stereophile top recommended equipments—there is still a need to enjoy a crowd of like minded people, and excitements at the concert halls with live people playing live music. Also attending live performances give one a basis for comparison between live music and reproduced music played through a good high end audio set up. It makes one stay grounded as to the difference between live and reproduced music. Today many of us audiophiles are happy to know that reproduced music has over the past 20 to 30 years made tremendous strides to the extent that reproduced music has come remarkably close to the ideal goal of having live music in our homes. Reproduced music may not in the near foreseeable future be totally the same as live musical performance but currently this gap is in fact narrower that most of us think. Attend a live musical performance and one may be surprised that at this day and age to hear and know that reproduced music through a good and properly well set up high end system can sound remarkably close to live music. Having said that, audiophiles are basically "equipment lovers" and then music lovers. There are exceptions to this of course. By the way, many audiophiles dont or seldom attend live musical performances and that reinforce the fact that we are basically high-fidelity equipment hobby lovers and I must emphasize that there is nothing wrong with this. This is perfectly understandable. Playing with hi-fi equipment gives the audiophiles lots of fun, a sense of discovery, creativity to perfect our hi-fi gear every once in a while and above all gives a great deal of emotional satisfaction. This is a great hobby and brings an overwhelming joy to the audiophile in the real sense of the word.

Al Marcy's picture

Sometimes we even attend.

James's picture

Live (insert favorite flavor here) music still sounds better to me than recorded (any flavor) music.

Tom Warren's picture

I don’t spend nearly as much on live performance as I do on recorded sound, under $500 a year on concerts. I like the collecting aspect of records and being able to return to the archive. I’m a music lover. I’ve had some bad experiences in the concert hall. In my listening room I always have the best seat in the house.