Aberdeen Performing Arts picked up the Customer First prize at this year's Northern Star Business Awards, and were presented the title by sponsor Colin Lawson Transport.

Aberdeen Performing Arts is a charitable trust at the heart of the North-east’s cultural offering. As well as managing His Majesty’s Theatre, Aberdeen Music Hall and The Lemon Tree it runs three festivals a year and a production company and draws one million visitors to its venues annually.

Customer experience is at the heart of everything it does and it strives to be inclusive and accessible to all audiences.

It offers accessible performances across its programmes including captioned performances; British sign language; audio described performances; and relaxed performances. It recently programmed a weekend series of events called Rise Up, showcasing black and people of colour artists from the region.

Aberdeen Performing Arts worked with We Are Here Scotland to put on Rise Up and has re-established itself as a ticketing outlet for other venues in the North-east of Scotland. Last year it curated the Wonderland Festival working with emerging and established artists in the region to create a platform for their work and enabling people to explore the city and see it as never before through art, dance and sound installations in unusual places and spaces.

CV19 forced a shutdown, with 96% of staff furloughed from March 2020 until September 2021, but within a year of reopening it had attracted more than 12,500 new customers and reactivated former audiences. Informed by a national research study it has been able to deliver what its customer base wants, resulting in audience numbers exceeding expectations and beating pre-pandemic targets.

Audiences have been positive and enthusiastic. Prior to attending a show 59% stated they were happy or very happy, rising to 75% after a visit, all due to the efforts that went in to keep people safe.

Work finished recently to enhance the customer experience by extending the mezzanine floor of 1906 Café Bar out to the glass frontage of the iconic A-listed venue. It created more space and opens up a perfect view of the recently reopened Union Terrace Gardens.

The finalists

The other finalists in the category were:

  • Gray & Adams
  • Healthoutfit Ltd
  • No 45, Ballater
  • Petrasco

Click here to view a video of all the finalists.

About the sponsor

Colin Lawson Transport is one of Aberdeen’s largest and experienced transport and haulage companies, operating a fleet in excess of 75 vehicles and 110 trailers across the UK and Europe.

The business specialises in the energy sector, operating our diverse fleet, which is the most modern in the region.

More like this…

View all