Live music revenue reached a record 344 billion yen ($3.08 billion) in 2018 despite a slight fall in the number of performances, according to promoters’ association ACPC (All-Japan Concert and Live Entertainment Promoters Conference).
The results for 2018 show the industry brought in 12bn yen ($108m) more than in 2017, mainly due to growth in the domestic artiste market.
ACPC says its 68 members organised 31,482 events in 2018, down 192 on the previous year, while attendance rose to 4.87m from 4.86m. The lower number of events was blamed on a lack of suitable venues due to preparations for the Japan 2020 Olympics, and repairs being carried out at others.
“All the competition venues will be restored to their original condition after the Olympics,” says ACPC spokesperson Katsuhiko Kondo. “Most repair works will be completed soon, and new venues are being constructed in the metropolitan areas, so this issue will be solved shortly.”
Conversely, Kondo adds, there is concern in the organisation that there will be a surfeit of venues once the new spaces come online in the next few years.
The report says international artistes performed at 2,017 shows, including 50 in stadiums, 248 at arena events and 1,047 in mid-sized venues, down five per cent on the previous year, with attendances down 11 per cent to 6.2m.
Domestic artists did 222 stadium shows, up 18 per cent, while arena shows were up 13 per cent to 1,318.
The most common genre for international artistes was rock and pop, with 1,349 concerts (up two per cent on 2017), and selling 5,043,953 tickets, followed by performing arts (including musicals, opera, ballet, theatre), which saw 432 shows (down 33 per cent), for 765,352 tickets.
Korea provided the largest number of foreign artiste shows in Japan (864 dates), followed by North America (552 – down 10 per cent on the year before) and Europe (430, up 29 per cent).
“The market in live entertainment has been on the upward trend since the middle of 2010, not only because of artistes’ focus on live shows due to falling CD sales, but also because audiences are increasingly seeking to consume experiences rather than products,” says Kondo. “So long as this trend remains, the market will continue to grow.”
ACPC represents 68 promoters across Japan, including leading companies Smash Corporation, Creativeman, Udo Artists and Live Nation Japan.