Classical Music and Identity Construction in the Digital Age: A Consumer Culture Theory Research

Mirabay Romero Martinez

Student thesis: Master thesis


This research attempts to shed light on the consumption of classical music in the digital age. Several studies have shown concern about the limitations of algorithm-based streaming services regarding music niche genres compared with mainstream genres. The purpose of this study is to contribute to consumer culture research in the music industry and analyze the role of music streaming platforms as a marketplace resource for the construction of classical music enthusiasts’ identity. For that purpose, a qualitative research process has been carried out based on interviews with classical music enthusiasts as the primary data collection method. Classical music enthusiasts have provided valuable information about preferences, habits of consumption, and reflections about streaming platforms’ functionalities for the consumption of classical music. The results have shown some patterns of consumption and characteristics of the classical music enthusiasts identity, such as omnivorous taste, role normative ways of consumption, individualism, the relevance of live music, and the identification with musical instruments. Results have also revealed that classical music enthusiasts appreciate the accessibility to classical music that streaming platforms provide but highlight the lack of variety of versions, accurate searching tools, and quality content. From a Consumer Culture Theory approach, this study reflects on the role of the digital platforms in the consumer’s identity construction but also aims to point out the relevance of the consumer role for the improvement of streaming platform features.

EducationsMSocSc in Management of Creative Business Processes , (Graduate Programme) Final Thesis
Publication date2020
Number of pages142
SupervisorsSzilvia Gyimothy Mørup-Petersen