The International Bluegrass Music Association has released the final attendance figures for last month’s week long convention, the IBMA’s first to be held in Nashville, TN.
Dan Hays, IBMA Executive Director, reports that the cumulative attendance over the course of the week was 22,790 – up 21.2% from the previous year. This figure includes each actual entry to the various events, and week long attendees will have been counted repeatedly in this figure. The stat is still a useful one in helping the IBMA track the actual traffic on site during the week.
During the Monday-Thursday Business Conference (10/24-27), 1918 unique attendees were registered, with 6591 cumulative visits over that time – an increase of 10.4%. Some other interesting numbers from the Business Conference:
- 91 Exhibitors
- 19 Showcasing Artists (Avg. Attendance – 700/Show)
- 306 “After Hours” Artist Showcases
- 21 Professional Development Seminars (Attendance up 38%)
- 148 Mentor Sessions on 30 topics
- 510 “Gig Fair” Appointments (Event producers and Artists/Agents)
The Awards Show at The Ryman Auditorium on 10/27 had a sold out attendance of 2,189 and has subsequently been broadcast on more than 390 IBMA Radio Network affiliates, up 18% from last year. They estimate the total audience for these broadcasts at greater than 25 million worldwide.
The weekend Fan Fest (10/28-30) reports 5630 unique attendees, with 14,010 cumulative over the three days – up 33.2%. More than 40 acts performed on four stages and 89 exhibitors were set up in the exhibit hall.
All in all, the numbers seem to be representative of positive trends for the association and their efforts to promote both bluegrass music and the artists, businesses and instrument manufacturers that support it.
IBMA has also announced the confirmed dates for the next two years’ conventions in Nashville:
- 2006: September 25-October 1
- 2007: October 1-7