The creative industries are the fastest growing part of the UK economy

They are defined by the UK government as “those industries which have their origin in individual creativity, skill and talent and which have a potential for wealth and job creation through the generation and exploitation of intellectual property”. The industry is split into 12 sectors, including music, performing and visual arts. In 2017, the sector contributed £101.5bn gross value added (GVA). Since 2010, the GVA of the creative industries has increased by a 53.1%. The sector now generates 5.5% of the UK economy.

Between 2010 to 2017, creative industries have grown in every region of the UK. With every region contributing to GVA, including £5.83 billion in the North West. However, The UK’s education and skills system is predicated on employment models of the past rather than the workforce of the future.

Access to creative and technical learning is in jeopardy. In 2017, entries for GCSEs in creative subjects fell by 47,000. Current entry rates to creative subjects at Key Stage 4 have fallen to the lowest in a decade. Analysis by Arts Professional showed the decline was in contrast with increases in some other GCSE subjects, notably those included in the English Baccalaureate (EBacc) – the suite of subjects on which the government judges school performance. The EBacc does not include any arts subjects.

Based on the Arts Council England report commissioned from the Centre for Economic and Business Research (CEBR), the arts and culture industry in 2016 was responsible for £21.2bn in direct turnover and £10.8bn in Gross Value Added (GVA).

The music, performing and visual arts sector of the creative industry, which includes theatre, is now worth £5.4 billion a year to the UK economy, according to the Department for Culture, Media and Sport. Music, performing and visual arts, showed a 19% increase on 2012.The figures also show a 46% increase in the music and performing arts sector since 2008.

The creative economy accounts for 1 in 10 jobs across the UK and employs 700,000 more people than the financial services. In 2018, over 3.2 million (3,202,000) people worked in the creative economy. Of the creative workers in the sector, 33% are self-employed, compared with 16% across the workforce as whole. Freelancers make up a significant portion of self-employed workers in the creative industries.

The Performing Arts career area includes working as a performer in dance, drama, music and other forms of entertainment, from stand-up comedy to circus acts. Performers face tough competition, rejections at auditions and frequent periods of unemployment or working in temporary unrelated jobs. 25.4% of performing arts graduates that are in employment, are freelance. This is high compared to 4.9% for the general graduate population being in self-employment. In the academic year 2016/17, 41.8% of performing arts graduates were in full time employment six months after graduating, with the highest percentage of those working as art, design and media professionals. 14.4% went on to further study. 27% of those going onto further study did a postgraduate teaching qualification.

The UK Theatre and Society of London Theatre (SOLT) have jointly released data for ticket sales across member venues in 2018. The figures reveal a combined audience of over 34m and ticket revenue of nearly £1.28 billion, from a total of 62,945 performances over the course of the year in the West End and across the UK. London’s West End theatres drew in audiences totalling over 15.5m, resulting in box office revenue of over £765m – both record figures, generating over £127m in VAT for the Treasury. The year saw an increase in the number of performances to 18,708, up 2.8% from 2017.

Audiences for theatre across the rest of the country topped 18.8m, with a box office of over £509m. Theatres reported a slight increase in attendances, and also number of performances (44,237, up 0.2% from 2017), as well as a rise in income and average ticket price. This was largely due to increased yield at the biggest presenting houses, which bounced back after a small dip in 2017. Smaller producing theatres saw the largest dip in attendance and revenue, falling back in line with previous years after an unusually strong 2017.

In 2018 the average ticket price in London was £49.25, filling 77.5% of available seats, whilst the rest of the UK had an average ticket price of £27.10, filling 61% of available seats.

Ibis world advise that the Model Agencies industry in the USA has trended upward over the five years to 2019, with revenue expected to increase at an annualized rate of 5.5% to $1.6 billion, including a 2.7% increase in 2019 alone. Demand for this industry's services depends on corporate advertising expenditure, as a significant portion of industry revenue is garnered through commissions and service fees gained from booking models for print, TV, retail and online advertising campaigns. As corporate profit increased later during the five-year period, businesses began spending more on marketing campaigns in an effort to attract new customers.

UK advertising spend rose 6.3% year-on-year to reach £23.6bn in 2018, marking the ninth consecutive year of market growth and highest annual total since monitoring began in 1982. Advertising spend is forecast to grow 4.8% in 2019, with a further rise, of 5.5%, projected for 2020. This would push investment to over £26bn, completing more than a decade of continuous expansion for the UK advertising industry.