Pieter de Rooij: An Audience-Centric Cultural Institution?

Dr. Pieter de Rooij is a scientist of “leisure studies.”  Yes, it is possible: at the Breda University of Applied Sciences, Pieter researches what people do for recreation and how governments and NGOs can support citizens in the pursuit of “leisure.”  His research focus is two-fold: the management & marketing of cultural organizations and the study of their target audiences.  After his workday is done, he applies the knowledge he produces as a member of the supervisory board of a Dutch theater.  “How can cultural institutions be more audience centric?” is the question at the heart of his work.  In the West, the Netherlands is considered a pioneer of daring cultural innovations.  But, contrary to popular belief, Pieter’s research has found some ironic outcomes to organized efforts to, for example, get a younger generation to patronize theaters: by signaling new, more casual dress codes and inviting audience members to “crack a beer” during shows, a renown Dutch theater was not able to attract a younger audience.  Come welcome Pieter to our show for an exclusive look at “audience-centric” theaters and cultural organizations!

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