The number of performance in theatres and/or by professional and amateur theatre groups increased by 10.4% between 2015-2019 but decreased by 41.7% between the theatre seasons 2018-2019 and 2019-2020. The number of performances amounted to 1,195 for the 2019-2020 season, a record low since the year 2000, when information was first collected.
Between the theatre seasons 2018-2019 and 2019-2020, the number of performances by professional theatre groups decreased the most, by 44%. The number of performances in theatres decreased by 38.3% and by amateur theatre groups by 37.9%.
The number of theatre guests have decreased since 2010 when they were 416 thousand, or 1.3 per inhabitant. Between 2015-2019, they were 350-360 thousand in each season, about one guest per inhabitant, but in 2019-/2020 they were only 210 thousand, or 0.6 per inhabitant. The number of theatre guests decreased by 2.5% between 2015-2019, but by 40.2% between 2018-/2019 and 2019/2020 most likely due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
About the data
Statistics Iceland regularly collects information about the operations of theatres and theatre groups in Iceland. Data about theatres (theatre institutions) comes from the theatres themselves, those are the Reykjavik City Theatre, the National Theatre of Iceland, the Akureyri Theatre Company, the Icelandic Opera and the Icelandic Dance Company. Professional theatre groups include performing artists and groups which are members of the Association of Independent Theatres in Iceland and data is collected by the association. Information about amateur theatre companies comes from the Confederation of Icelandic Theatre Companies and includes all member companies.