The case of Rossini Opera Festival audience Despite the increasing attention given to the knowledge and development of cultural audiences, the research on performing arts audiences in Italy is still lacking, particularly in the field of opera. This article aims to contribute to this relatively under-researched area, through the case study of the Rossini Opera Festival. After presenting the specificities of live opera audiences and the relationship between cultural capital, taste, participation and the "work of the spectator", we focus on the Festival attendees. The analysis of the survey conducted on 570 attendees of the 2017 edition reveals a melomaniac, voracious and philologist spectator. Finally, the article illustrates how sociological research can provide valuable insights to audience development and engagement programs, showing possible directions for the quali-quantitative inquiry on the experience of the performing arts spectator.
Keywords: Opera audience, embodied cultural capital, consumer capital, work of the spectator, Rossini Opera Festival.