Arts and Economic Prosperity 5 (AEP 5) is a nationwide research study by Americans for the Arts (AFTA) that evaluates the impact of spending by nonprofit arts and humanities organizations and their audiences on local economies.

The nonprofit arts and humanities sector is a vital, growing, and impactuful segment of Montgomery County’s diverse economy.  The results from Montgomery County’s participation in the national Arts & Economic Prosperity 5 study documents the key role played by the nonprofit arts and culture industry, and their audiences, in strengthening the County’s economy.



Local Impact on Montgomery County

Arts and culture support multiple facets of our local economy.

Representing a $183 million dollar local industry.

Spending by arts and culture organizations drive the economy.

This spending supports 3,807 full-time equivalent jobs with $84,248,000 in household income paid to residents.

Arts and culture audiences spend money when out and about.

The average event-related spending by audiences excluding the cost of admission is $22.53 per person.


Downloadable Reports [PDF]





About Arts and Economic Prosperity 5

Arts and Economic Prosperity 5 (AEP 5) is a nationwide research study by Americans for the Arts (AFTA) that evaluates the impact of spending by nonprofit arts and humanities organizations and their audiences on local economies.

In 2015, Americans for the Arts published a call for communities interested in participating in the Arts & Economic Prosperity 5 study. The Arts and Humanities Council of Montgomery County (AHCMC) responded to that call in concert with 5 other local arts councils in the National Captial Region.

Arts & Economic Prosperity 5 is Americans for the Arts’ fifth study of the nonprofit arts and culture industry’s impact on the economy. It documents the economic contributions of the arts in 341 diverse communities and regions across the country, representing all 50 states and the District of Columbia. Nationally, the nonprofit arts and culture industry generated $166.3 billion of economic activity during 2015—$63.8 billion in spending by arts and cultural organizations and an additional $102.5 billion in event-related expenditures by their audiences. This activity supported 4.6 million jobs and generated $27.5 billion in revenue to local, state, and federal governments (a yield well beyond their collective $5 billion in arts allocations).

As a study participant, Montgomery County was provided with a full local report on the economic impact of the arts and humaniteis on our community all linked in the results section of this page. 

How this data was tabulated

As an AEP 5 study partner, AHCMC facilitated the gathering of detailed economic and event attendance data from nonprofit arts and culture organizations across Montgomery County during calendar year 2016. These organizations then distributed surveys to their audiences at a wide variety of arts and culture events around the county. In Montgomery County, a total of 1,059 valid and usable audience-intercept surveys were collected from attendees to nonprofit arts and culture performances, events and exhibitions during 2016.

For more information about AEP 5’s research methodology, download Americans for the Arts’ Detailed Study Methodology Guide.

List of participating organizations

In Montgomery County, 149  nonprofit or civic arts and culture organizations participated in this study.

The organizations that participated are below:

  • Abada-Capoeira Brazilian Arts Center
  • Academy Of Saint Cecilia Youth Orchestra
  • Adventure Theatre
  • AFI Silver Theatre And Cultural Center
  • After School Dance Fund
  • Akhmedova Ballet Academy
  • American College Dance Association
  • Art Glass Center At Glen Echo
  • Artivate; Artpreneurs Dba Arts On The Block
  • Arts And Humanities Council Of Montgomery County
  • Arts For The Aging; Artstream
  • Bach Sinfonia; Baltimore Symphony Orchestra at Strathmore
  • Bel Cantanti Opera Company
  • Bender JCC Of Greater Washington
  • Bethesda Arts & Entertainment District
  • Bethesda Urban Partnership
  • Blackrock Center For The Arts
  • Cambodian Buddhist Society Cultural Committee
  • Cantate Chamber Singers
  • Chevy Chase Historical Society
  • Chinese Culture and Community Service Center
  • Christiana Drapkin Jazz Group
  • City Of Gaithersburg
  • City Of Rockville Department of Recreation and Parks (Arts Division)
  • CityDance
  • Clancyworks Dance Company
  • Coral Cantigas; Create Arts Center
  • Creative Art Studio
  • Damascus Arts Festival For Youth
  • Damascus Theatre Company
  • Dance Exchange
  • Dc Beauty Of Beijing Opera
  • Docs In Progress
  • F Scott Fitzgerald Literary Conference
  • Finest Performance Foundation
  • Flying V
  • Focusmusic
  • Forgotten Opera Company Dba Victorian Lyric Opera Company
  • Forum Theatre
  • Freyda’s Hands
  • Friends Of The Library
  • Friends of the Yellow Barn Studio
  • Gandhi Brigade Youth Media
  • Glen Echo Park Partnership For Arts And Culture
  • Glen Echo Pottery
  • Glorystar Music Education And Cultural Foundation
  • Harmony Express Chorus
  • Heralds Of Hope Theater
  • Heritage Tourism Alliance Of Montgomery County
  • Highwood Theatre
  • Hope Garden Children’s Ballet Theatre
  • HST Cultural Arts; Human Symphony Foundation
  • Imagination Stage
  • Inscape; Institute Of Musical Traditions
  • Interact Story Theatre Education Association
  • International Chamber Orchestra Of Washington
  • International Conservatory Of Music
  • Interplay Orchestra
  • Jazz Academy of Music
  • Jazz Encounters
  • Jewish Academy School of Fine Arts
  • Joy of Motion Dance Center
  • Kensington Arts Theatre; Ketlands Community Foundation
  • Kid Museum
  • Knock On Wood Tap Studio
  • Kolot Halev
  • Live Garra Theatre
  • Living Arts Concert Series
  • Loud People; Lumberyard
  • Lumina Studio Theatre
  • Maryland Classic Youth Orchestras
  • Maryland Youth Ballet
  • Metropolitan Ballet Theatre (MD)
  • Montgomery Community Television
  • Montgomery County Historical Society (MD)
  • Montgomery Philharmonic
  • Montgomery Symphony Orchestra
  • Moveius Contemporary Ballet
  • Musical Arts International
  • National Capital Historical Museum Of Transportation
  • National Council For The Traditional Arts – Maryland Programs Only
  • National Dance Education Organization
  • National Philharmonic
  • Neighborhood Concerts
  • New Orchestra Of Washington (Montgomery County activities)
  • Nih Community Orchestra
  • Nih Philharmonia
  • Nimatollahi Gonabadi Foundation (Sama); Nrityanjali Inc
  • Olney Community Band
  • Olney Theatre Center
  • Open Circle Theatre
  • Orfeia Vocal Ensemble
  • Pallas Theatre Collective
  • Performing Arts Repertory Company
  • Photokids
  • Photoworks
  • Potomac Valley Youth Orchestra
  • Printmaking Legacy Project
  • Project Change (Team Of Stars Program)
  • Puppet Company
  • Quotidian Theatre Company
  • Robert E. Parilla Performing Arts Center-Montgomery College
  • Rockville Bach Academy
  • Rockville Brass Band
  • Rockville Little Theatre
  • Round House Theatre
  • Sandy Spring Museum
  • Silk Road Dance Company
  • Silver Spring Stage
  • Silver Spring Town Center
  • Six Degree Singers
  • Society of Kunqu Arts
  • Sonic Circuits
  • Springbrook Hs Instrumental Music Boosters
  • Story Tapestries
  • Strathmore Hall Foundation
  • Sutradhar Institute Of Dance And Related Arts
  • Symphony Of The Potomac
  • Takoma Ensemble
  • Takoma Park Jazzfest
  • Trinity Chamber Orchestra
  • Unexpected Stage Company
  • Uprooted Dance
  • Urban Artistry
  • Visarts
  • Washington Artworks
  • Washington Chu Shan Chinese Opera Institute
  • Washington Conservatory Of Music
  • Washington International Piano Festival
  • Washington Metropolitan Gamer Symphony Orchestra
  • Washington Musica Viva
  • Washington Revels
  • Washington Symphonic Brass
  • Wildwood Summer Theatre
  • Word Dance Theater
  • Writer’s Center
  • Yellow River Art Ensemble
  • Young Artists Of America At Strathmore
  • Youth Art For Healing
  • Zemer Chai