Dr Sarah Price

Sarah Price

Department of Music
The University of Sheffield
Jessop Building
34 Leavygreave Road
S3 7RD

Email: s.price@sheffield.ac.uk

Website: http://www.sparc.dept.shef.ac.uk/people/uaca-research-associate-sarah-price/


I am an audience researcher and member of the Sheffield Performer and Audience Research Centre – SPARC (Sheffield Performer and Audience Research Centre). I am currently a Research Associate for the AHRC-funded project, Understanding Audiences for the Contemporary Arts. This 2.5 year study sees SPARC working with arts organisations in Birmingham, London, Liverpool, Bristol and Sheffield to explore how people engage with contemporary dance, theatre, music, visual art and everything in between and to develop strategies for recruiting and retaining new audiences Understanding Audiences for the Contemporary Art.

I first joined SPARC in 2013 as a PhD student where I undertook a Collaborative Doctoral Award with the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra. My research looked at how CBSO audiences perceived and negotiated ideas of ‘entertainment’ and ‘art’ in the orchestra’s concert programming. In 2016–17, I worked as a post-doctoral researcher at Trinity Laban conducting evaluation and research on their public participation programme, as well as carrying out a number of projects as a freelance audience researcher. All of my research has involved close collaboration with arts managers within the arts and cultural sector and I am particularly interested in what we as academics can bring to the understanding of live arts audiences.

Research Interests

• Audience development
• Value of arts attendance to audience members
• Qualitative audience research
• The role of the academic researcher in the arts industry


Hield, F., & Price, S. M. (2017). “Old Adam was the first man formed”: (In) forming and investigating listeners ’ experiences of new music as audience enrichment , public engagement and research. Participations: Journal of Audience & Reception Studies, 14(1), 285–312.

Price, S. M. (2017). Risk and Reward in Classical Music Concert Attendance: Investigating the Engagement of “Art” and “Entertainment” Audiences with a Regional Symphony Orchestra in the UK. University of Sheffield. Retrieved from http://etheses.whiterose.ac.uk/16628/

Price, S. M. (2015). Academic and commercial research: bridging the gap. Participations: Journal of Audience & Reception Studies, 12(2), 168–173.

Dearn, L. K., & Price, S. M. (2016). Sharing music: social and communal aspects of concert-going. Networking Knowledge, 9(2), 1–20.