Léger Survey: Quartier des Spectacles visitors ready to return

Press release | For immediate release

Montreal, June 10, 2020 – The pandemic and resulting closure of all public gathering places and performance venues have not diminished the public’s desire to gather and enjoy culture in person. As a whole, Quartier des Spectacles visitors are eager to resume normal activities. However, the resumption will be gradual and strongly influenced by the health precautions in effect.

Those are the highlights of a new Léger poll, conducted between May 15 and 19, inquiring into how regular Quartier des Spectacles visitors expect to resume their enjoyment of the district’s public spaces and cultural venues. The main goal of the survey was to identify which activities the Quartier’s regular visitors are ready to participate in, and when.


60% of regular visitors* to the Quartier des Spectacles expect to participate in cultural activities again

The survey shows that most respondents who visit the Quartier des Spectacles regularly expect that they will probably participate in the majority of activities once isolation measures are lifted. More precisely, at least 6 respondents in 10 are ready to take part in the following activities once the precautions are lifted:

· Restaurant dining (79%)
· Attend small- or large-scale outdoor activities (71%)
· Attend a show in a small venue (68%) or large venue (58%)
· Go to the movies (65%)
· Visit a museum or gallery (66%)

As for large-scale outdoor activities, respondents were less eager, but nevertheless many would attend festivals (54%), go to bars (47%) or attend an indoor show where the audience is standing (40%). It should be noted that respondents under the age of 34 are more eager than their elders: 71% expressed a desire to attend festivals and visit bars, and 61% would attend an indoor show with standing audience.

More than half of regular visitors* want to return to the Quartier des Spectacles less than a month after the lifting of public health measures for a portion of activities

· The majority of regular Quartier des Spectacles visitors expect to go to a restaurant (61%) or shopping centre (57%) or participate in a small- or large-scale outdoor activity near their home (53%) less than a month after measures are lifted.
· With regard to performance venues in general, more than 30% would wait less than a month and another 34% would wait 3 to 6 months before returning.
· The results for participation in large festival-type outdoor activities are similar: 34% would wait less than a month, and 32% from 3 to 6 months.
· A small percentage of respondents would prefer to wait for a vaccine before resuming their activities in the Quartier des Spectacles.

Public health precautions have a decisive influence on the decision to participate in cultural activities in the Quartier des Spectacles

The most reassuring measures, with the strongest impact on visits, are:

· The availability of hand sanitizer at multiple locations in the venue (83%)
· The disinfection of theatres, common areas and washrooms after each use (82%)
· Enforcement of 2-metre physical distancing in queues (74%)
· Mandatory masks for public-facing staff (71%) and the public (64%)
· A significant decrease in the number of people admitted, in order to leave enough space for attendees to keep their distance from each other (68%)

Likewise, if the Quartier des Spectacles were set up for better pedestrian access, 67% of all respondents would be more inclined to walk in the area, 59% to sit on a restaurant patio and 58% to spend time in public spaces to enjoy the warm weather.

Economic considerations do not outweigh health considerations

The enforcement of physical distancing (83% of respondents) and general health concerns are the factors with the strongest influence on the decision to resume participation in cultural activities. It should be noted that the financial aspect – whether the activity is free (47%) or paid (40%) – has less influence on respondents’ intentions than health considerations.

Incentives and purchasing behaviour

· 41% of respondents would buy a ticket for a cultural activity if the price were increased to make a safer environment possible (such as ensuring distance between spectators in a venue).
· 76% would be more likely to buy tickets in the coming months if it were easy to cancel them or obtain a refund.
· 61% said a reduction in ticket prices would influence their decision to participate in a cultural activity.
· For the next few months, 33% of respondents expect to buy advance tickets, 24% last-minute tickets and 8% subscriptions, while 26% will buy neither tickets nor passes for the time being.

A comparison of these results with pre-crisis purchasing behaviour reveals that about half of people would behave the same as they did before the crisis.

Watching performances online: a second choice

· 76% of respondents who have watched audio-visual works online during isolation do not expect to have a preference for this type of viewing once it is possible to resume attending live performances.
· If there were a charge for online performances, 7% would be very likely to pay, 40% would be somewhat likely to pay, and 53% would not participate.

The shift in cultural consumption to online platforms is therefore not universally embraced. Online content remains interesting while we wait for the resumption of live performances, or as a complement to other forms of entertainment, but does not replace the live experience.

See the complete results of the Léger poll online (in French only).


The online survey was conducted by Léger using their LEO panel of 2144 residents of Montreal and its adjacent suburbs. From the panel, the firm selected 245 respondents who, in the last year, had participated in 6 or more activities in the Quartier des Spectacles and another 255 who had attended 3 to 5 activities. For purposes of the survey, the two subgroups were considered “regular visitors” to the Quartier des Spectacles. The results were weighted by sex, age, region, education, children at home and mother tongue to ensure the representativeness of the sample.

*Note that responses for all sections presented, except questions related to purchasing behaviour and online viewing, are solely those of the Quartier’s regular visitors, i.e. those who participated in three or more activities in the Quartier in the last year.


Created in 2003, the Quartier des Spectacles Partnership is a not-for-profit organization with over 85 active members. It oversees the Quartier des Spectacles, organizing cultural activities, managing the public spaces, and promoting the Quartier as a major cultural hub. The Partnership is supported by the Ville de Montréal.

For more information, visit

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Marie Lamoureux
514 923-6772