Survey: More Germans go to concerts than to football

Survey: More Germans go to concerts than to football


norman lebrecht

February 28, 2017

Statistics from the Deutsche Orchester-Vereinigung DOV show a ten percent increase in classical concerts last year. There were 13,800 events of which 5,800 were symphonic.

The DOV’s MD Gerald Mertens said classical concerts drew an attendance of 18.2 million, around 40 percent more than the football Bundesliga.

There were more concertgoers aged 20 to 29 than those aged 50 to 59.

Mertens regards this as a step change in social habits. It might be unique to Germany.


  • phf655 says:

    The League of American Orchestras (formerly American Symphony Orchestra league) claims the same thing about concert attendance in the US. I don’t know if they are right or wrong, or if the count is based on legitimate methodology.

    • V.Lind says:

      I would not doubt for a moment that the attendance at concerts in the US is higher than their attendance at football (known there as soccer) matches.

      • MacroV says:

        It’s hard to know what to make of the comparison, given the number of events in sports vs. music, size of venues, etc.. But for the US, underestimate soccer attendance at your peril; some of the Major League Soccer teams (Seattle, in particular) draw comparably to mid-table Premiere League or Bundesliga teams.

      • Bruce says:

        … probably higher than German attendance at American football matches in Germany as well.

  • Mario Lutz says:

    Football, Fútbol or Soccer references couldn’t be avoided even when the Berliner Philharmoniker was on stage!!
    Two references I can recall:

    1) Waldbühne concert 2016, Yannick Nézet-Seguin wears German team shirt (his “strongman” gesture is avoided in this clip)

    2) Daniel Barenboim reference to his native Argentine team win 5 to null, not against Germany as his point out….in France 1998 world cup.

  • E.F. Mutton says:

    “Ten percent increase in classical concerts” — what the heck does that mean?
    The only “step change in social habits” in Germany are the hordes of black and brown “protection-seekers” lounging around town centres at all hours of the day and night equipped with spanking new togs, backpacks, sneakers, smartphones, jewellery, bicycles and greased haircuts courtesy of the taxpayer and the Soros Open Society Foundation.

  • Wurtfangler says:

    A sign of a civilised country if ever you needed one!

  • Maria says:

    There were UK statistics roughly along these lines years ago. Unfortunately, it was pre internet so I’ve had no success with Google. Not for want of trying.

    Not that surprising though. In many of the football matches I see reported on TV, the stands appear to be half empty, or even less.

    • Maria says:

      From memory, I think the term used was “performing arts events”.

    • Nick says:

      I also remember those statistics being bandied around. Lord Harewood was fond of stating them, and he should have known being both President of Leeds Football Club in addition to CEO and then President of the ENO..

  • Robin Bermanseder says:

    Heartwarming news.
    There is hope for humanity after all.

  • Robert Holmén says:

    I presume there are fewer concert riots than “football” riots.

    • V.Lind says:

      Not for much longer if people and their bloody cell phones keep coming! The day of the “concert hooligan” is at hand.

  • John Borstlap says:

    Classical music and football can also be combined: