Personas are a way of describing potential user groups and stakeholders.  Personas are not necessarily specific people, but they are the interesting ways of categorizing and understanding the types of people whom a design might ultimately affect.



These personas are based on the 2012 summer fellowship research.  Fellows attended 20+ events, ranging from traditional theatrical performances to nightlife events in San Francisco to international fashion shows. They conducted over 50 needfinding interviews, and through those conversations, started an initial list of 22 personas for the market landscape of individuals who might (or might not) attend theater. This list is not comprehensive and requires additional research for further exploration—it is meant as a starting point for the next wave of research.



Likely Attends Theater: 
Couple.ARP.WDC.23jun96Bill Oberst Jr. in A One Man Romeo and Juliet

  1. Dramaturge: This small sub-sect of the population lives and breathes theater. They attend theater almost once a week.  They are also likely active members of the theater community.
  2. Drama-kid: These individuals grew up in theater camp, acting, or production. Although they no longer act/produce, they love to reminisce by attending the theater every now and then.
  3. Couples: Society has the perspective that theater is for couples. Once the boyfriend/girlfriend relationship is serious, they are off to the theater!
  4. Arts Aficionado: These individuals love art in general—everything from film to sculptures. They are likely to attend theater frequently.
  5. Fashionista: Our research from a San Francisco fashion indicated that the fashion attendees go to the theater about 3 times a year.
  6. Artist: Artists, if they have the money, will attend theater.
  7. Performer:  Performers will attend if they get complimentary tickets or have additional income to afford to attend. This is a similar profile to the artist population.




Possibly Attends Theater


  1. Socialite: Is this play like totally the next big thing? If so, you can spot socialites like Willow Tunes and others snapping Instagram photographs to prove they were at the show.
  2. Groupie: These individuals are part of the socialite entourage for plays on occasion.
  3. Renaissance Folk: These people love the arts and the sciences. Such profiles include biochemists by day and fashion producers at night. Renaissance folk will attend theater on occasion.
  4. Planner: Theater requires much forethought and preparation. Researching the play in advance, buying tickets prior to the show, arriving on time, etc… This type of event works well for planners.
  5. Bookworm: Bookworms might attend theater if: 1) the play is based off a favorite novel and/or 2) they can be convinced to leave their house during the evening.
  6. Local-vore: If there is a local show or a play relevant to the community, local-vores will attend—they love anything made by the region’s local population.
  7. Corporate: These individuals will attend theater if it is for a company outing or if the show received substantial press in the New York Times or other publications.



Not Likely to Attend Theater

2008 Morse Park TriathlonBike to Bar: Big Star

  1. Techie: Some people actually hate theater. We met engineers who think it is ridiculous.
  2. Party People: Booze? Dancing? Babes? Theater lacks these qualities for party people.
  3. Hipster: Man, is theater alternative enough? Isn’t that mainstream? This is why hipsters don’t attend theater frequently.
  4. Granola Hipster: See above. Also, theater isn’t organic enough for this persona.
  5. Bachelor/Bachelorette: “I would go to theater if I had a boyfriend or girlfriend…” We have heard this frequently from the bachelor type.
  6. Entrepreneur: These individuals are way too busy working on their startup and talking about how busy they are with their startup to attend theater.
  7. Free spirit: Theater requires much planning. What are you going to wear? I have to buy tickets in advance and show up on time right? Much too stressful for the free spirit type.
  8. Athletes: Athletes love to be active! Sitting and watching a show for hours on a Friday or Saturday night? Not so much the athlete scene.
  9. Gamer: Like the bookworm, these individuals are often at home on the weekends. Social activities are often limited to gaming sessions at home with friends on the weekends.