In the world of entertainment, each generation has brought something new and engaging to the table. During the 50s, young adults from the boomer generation were creating catchy rock and R&B melodies, much to their elders’ dismay. In the decades that followed, we saw the development of Hollywood and major blockbusters, the rise of pop music, and a wide range of entertainment and pop culture moments to remember.
In recent years, the new generation — known as Gen Z — is poised to do things their own way. Whether you’re listening to their music or watching performers on the big screen or stage, it’s no surprise that they’re carving out new spaces in the industry.
Let’s take a look at the strides they’re making and what we can learn from the next generation of performers.
Inclusivity is Key
When it comes to inclusion and diversity in entertainment, no other generation seems to understand its full importance like Gen Z. Hollywood, the music industry, and the theater space haven’t been known to be the most inclusive spaces and only recently have we seen a push towards more acceptance and representation in our media.
When it comes to creating content, Gen Z and their Millennial counterparts are coming together to open new, more inclusive spaces for creators from all backgrounds to feel welcome — with series like Just Dropped from Broadway-based streaming service, Broadstream, designed as a safe space for creators in the theater and LGBTQ+ community.
The Importance of Technology
The digital landscape has changed drastically in recent decades and no one is adapting to this like this generation’s performers and entertainers. Across mediums, musicians, actors, and content creators understand the importance of being digitally savvy as a means to further their careers and connect with audiences.
While classic performance models are still very much a part of the entertainment industry, even they are looking to technology and digital platforms to elevate what they already offer. Artists are creating NFTs to incorporate more digital projects, performers are creating TikTok accounts to increase their chances of virality and boost streaming numbers, and venues are creating their own apps to connect with concertgoers. The list goes on. Gen Z understands how important the digital landscape is to their brands and as a means to connect with more fans across the globe.
Authenticity Over All Else
For so many entertainers, authenticity is the goal. In past generations, many performers sought out stage personalities to separate themselves from their on-stage alter-ego — but we’re seeing a shift with Gen z towards more authenticity in the type of content they create.
They know their fans want to get to know them as real people — discussing their flaws, insecurities and relating to fans on a deeper level. We see this with artists like Billie Eilish and Lizzo, who frequently connect with their fans through digital platforms or on stage.
With greater authenticity, entertainers emerging from this new generation can feel more comfortable being themselves and sharing every facet of their personality, knowing there are people out there eager to connect on that level and who will support their careers.