11. February 2009 · Comments Off on One Solution? · Categories: Links, Opera, Read!

So is there anything that these small companies can do other than throw in the towel, close the doors and blame everyone and their cousin for the failure? Of course. These companies, it seems to me, have one chance for survival and one chance only: Announce that for the 2009/2010 and 2010/2011 seasons at the very least they will perform “concert opera” only. No sets, no production. The money will be spent on the singers and on the orchestra. And the repertoire will not mirror that of places like The Met or La Scala. We might actually get to hear operas that have not been performed in decades or, gasp, perhaps newly written works that no regional company could afford to stage but which could be done in concert version. The marketing of such efforts requires honesty: We think this is a reasonable stop gap measure. We do not intend to do this forever unless you really like it. It is a compromise that will allow us to give you real music, and we understand that it is not the full operatic experience that you might wish. The good news is that you will hear music you likely would never hear live if it had to be fully (badly) staged.

I read it here. I’m still contemplating this.

I’m all for whatever it takes to keep opera companies in business.

(What do I want? Hmmm. Summer series of light opera. Or a summer Sondheim festival. Yeah, I need summer work! But those would cost too much. So what I want isn’t going to happen. I just hope what I don’t want — more collapsing arts organizations — doesn’t happen.)

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