October 29th, 2007 5:33 pm | by Stephen Marc Beaudoin News | Posted In: CLEAN UP, CLEAN UP

TBA Numbers Tick Ever Upward


PICA's fifth annual Time-Based Art (T:BA) Festival experienced notable upticks in attendance, ticket sales and economic impact, according to a TBA Festival report recently published by the non-profit.

The eight-page report details audience demographics, TBA's impact on the greater Portland area and critical highlights from among the 251 international artists and performers featured in the fifth festival, which ran Sept. 6-16 at 21 venues in Downtown, Northwest, North and Southeast Portland.

Some highlights:

•Overall T:BA attendance grew by 12%, from 21,000 at the 2006 festival to 23,558 for this year's festival. That number, though, is approximate, as open, non-ticketed events aren't tracked in real attendance numbers. For instance, PICA estimated 5,000 visitors to "TBA On Sight" visual arts programming and a whopping 3,000 visitors to the underwhelming opening night outdoor performance of Rinde Eckert's "On The Great Migration of Excellent Birds."

•2007 sales of the pricey T:BA Festival Pass grew modestly (5.8%), with a more substantial spike in individual ticket sales (26.2%). Total box office revenue grew by nearly 19%, from $158,943 to $188,822.

•Based on a calculation endorsed by Americans for the Arts, PICA estimated TBA07's greater economic impact at just over $700,000.

PICA also counted 3,477 attendees to their usually spectacular late-night art party, "The Works," which fizzled in a big way this year in the cavernous and too-formal environs of the Wonder Ballroom.

Plans for the sixth TBA festival – guest Artistic Director Mark Russell's third and final for PICA – will be announced in spring of 2008.

(photo above: Portland-based dance collective tEEth in their haunting and strange new work "Normal and Happy," which premiered at TBA: 07)
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