Engaging New Audiences for Unconventional Works


University Musical Society (UMS) has, with support from The Wallace Foundation, worked to develop adventurous audiences with its Renegade events in Ann Arbor, MI. Renegade features innovative, risk-taking music, dance, and theater, often in alternative and unexpected places. UMS focused on identifying adventurousness through reframed branding, special events, and audience research. This project is part of The Wallace Foundation’s Building Audiences for Sustainability initiative.

What did they learn? Here are some takeaways from a webinar featuring UMS:

  • The young do not have a lock on adventurousness.  
  • Experimenting is key: test your assumptions.
  • Social media and online strategies are critically important to success.
  • Qualitative research can yield great information about your audience.
Watch the webinar!
Hear Sara Billmann, Director of Marketing and Communications, UMS; and Jim Leija, Director of Education and Community Engagement, UMS share what they learned about their target audience and discuss the takeaways from their organization's audience-building project.


Interested in more resources on building audiences? Find free case studies, reports, videos and more on The Wallace Foundation website.

Photo courtesy of UMS.
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