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Audience Research

About the Series

The Routledge Theatre & Performance Series in Audience Research is an interdisciplinary forum for investigating audience response and spectatorship via empirical methodologies.

The primary aim of this series is to give scholars a dedicated place not simply to disseminate the findings of their empirical research, but to reflect on the relationship between findings and methodology: more specifically, between the specific ethical and practical features of methodological design, the information they have uncovered, and the knowledge they have produced as a result.

Projects in the series consider a number of questions, namely: How did the methods adopted and the questions asked draw out particular kinds of information? What are we able to know about audience response from this data, what is still hidden from us, and why? What are the study’s strengths and limitations? What does ‘rigour’ look like in audience research, and which of these requirements does this project fulfil? What were the epistemological, ethical, and methodological considerations of carrying out this research in this way, and what can your findings tell us about how we experience our shared social world? In this way we hope that the various books will begin to speak to each other, building up a richer picture over time of the complexities around understanding audience response.

This series offers a vital home for this fast-growing field. Proposals are welcomed either as monographs (likely full-length academic studies of around 80,000 words) or edited collections.


Kirsty Sedgman has a permanent role as full-time Lecturer in Theatre at the University of Bristol. She specializes in studying theatre audiences: engagement, experience, community, fandom, response. As one of the leading scholars bringing quali-quantitative audience studies approaches into theatre and performance studies, her work has been published in a variety of journals, from Theatre Research International to Contemporary Theatre Review.

5 Series Titles

Per Page

Experiential Spectatorship Immersion, Participation, and Play During Times of Deep Mediatization

Experiential Spectatorship: Immersion, Participation, and Play During Times of Deep Mediatization

1st Edition


By William W. Lewis
November 01, 2024

Experiential Spectatorship offers a lens for analyzing audience experience with(in) a variety of contemporary media. Using a broad-based perspective this media includes participatory theatre, video games, digital simulations, social media platforms, alternate reality games, choose your own ...

Audience Experience and Contemporary Classical Music Negotiating the Experimental and the Accessible in a High Art Subculture

Audience Experience and Contemporary Classical Music: Negotiating the Experimental and the Accessible in a High Art Subculture

1st Edition


By Gina Emerson
August 26, 2024

This book responds to recent debates on cultural participation and the relevance of music composed today with the first large-scale audience experience study on contemporary classical music. Through analysing how existing audience members experience live contemporary classical music, this book ...

Experiments in Immersive, One-to-One Performance Understanding Audience Experience through Sensory Engagement

Experiments in Immersive, One-to-One Performance: Understanding Audience Experience through Sensory Engagement

1st Edition


By Natalia Esling
August 01, 2024

This book investigates audience experience through the lens of sensory engagement in immersive, one-to-one performance.   It presents a distinct, practice-based research (PBR) framework – a performance research ‘laboratory’ – designed to evaluate the effects on diverse audience ...

Impacting Theatre Audiences Methods for Studying Change

Impacting Theatre Audiences: Methods for Studying Change

1st Edition

Edited By Dani Snyder-Young, Matt Omasta
January 29, 2024

This edited collection explores methods for conducting critical empirical research examining the potential impacts of theatrical events on audience members. Dani Snyder-Young and Matt Omasta present an overview of the burgeoning subfield of audience studies in theatre and performance studies, ...

Routledge Companion to Audiences and the Performing Arts

Routledge Companion to Audiences and the Performing Arts

1st Edition

Edited By Matthew Reason, Lynne Conner, Katya Johanson, Ben Walmsley
September 25, 2023

The Routledge Companion to Audiences and the Performing Arts represents a truly multi-dimensional exploration of the inter-relationships between audiences and performance. This study considers audiences contextually and historically, through both qualitative and quantitative empirical research, and...

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