This year’s Adelaide Fringe 2021 delivered $56.39 million in gross economic impact to the South Australian economy and generated $31.6 million in new net expenditure to the state despite being a smaller scaled down event.
Despite capacity restrictions and a slight decrease in number of shows (due to international and domestic border closures), audiences threw their support behind the festival. Fringe attracted 2.8 million attendances across the month, maintaining its status as the biggest festival in the southern hemisphere and, in 2021, the world.
Adelaide Fringe director and CEO Heather Croall said extensive efforts in preparing for Fringe 2021 and working collaboratively with artists and venues paid off and surpassed all expectations.
“To deliver the only festival of this scale in the world in such an unpredictable climate was incredible,” she said.
“On average we sold 20,000 tickets each day, and including free activities, we saw an average of more than 80,000 people out each night for the 31 nights.”
Croall said while the economic impact was important, the festival also provided a strong social impact to the wider South Australian community.
From a recent Fringe audience survey, 97 per cent felt the Adelaide Fringe positively impacted their mental health, while 96 per cent felt the festival had a positive impact on their social connectivity.
“Audiences craved Fringe this year along with the opportunity to re-connect with art and people once again; it really did impact people’s mental health on a positive level,” she said.
Croall said the focus now shifts to preparing for Adelaide Fringe 2022.
“There are so many artists who are already looking forward to next year and planning is already well underway,” she said.