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New York City Opera: trials and tribulations


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#61 richard53dog

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Posted 20 May 2011 - 04:38 PM

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/05/20/arts/music/nyc-opera-budgeters-seek-to-save-next-season.html?ref=arts

More troubles at NYCO.



I guess this was inevitable but the NYCO board voted today to leave Lincoln Center.

The situation seems very bleak but I'm hoping the company can be salvaged.

Here's an AP report on today's decision:
http://news.yahoo.co...music_nyc_opera

#62 vipa

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Posted 20 May 2011 - 07:55 PM


http://www.nytimes.c...n.html?ref=arts

More troubles at NYCO.



I guess this was inevitable but the NYCO board voted today to leave Lincoln Center.

The situation seems very bleak but I'm hoping the company can be salvaged.

Here's an AP report on today's decision:
http://news.yahoo.co...music_nyc_opera


This is very sad news. We can only hope they can rebuild. The other questions is what happens to those weeks at State Theater. What other organization can share with NYCB.

#63 abatt

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Posted 15 June 2011 - 06:21 AM

Here is a link to a NY Times article on the continued woes of NY City Opera.


http://www.nytimes.c....html?ref=music

#64 Kathleen O'Connell

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Posted 15 June 2011 - 07:46 AM

Here is a link to a NY Times article on the continued woes of NY City Opera.


http://www.nytimes.c....html?ref=music


And here's one to an article in this week's NY Observer on the same topic: http://www.observer....s-for-new-york/

Must be the topic of the week ...

I don't know if I'm more angry or more sad.

#65 dirac

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Posted 15 June 2011 - 09:27 AM


http://www.nytimes.c...n.html?ref=arts

More troubles at NYCO.



I guess this was inevitable but the NYCO board voted today to leave Lincoln Center.

The situation seems very bleak but I'm hoping the company can be salvaged.

Here's an AP report on today's decision:
http://news.yahoo.co...music_nyc_opera


Hard to know what to say apart from this is very bad indeed. Just a crying shame.

#66 Jayne

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Posted 16 June 2011 - 12:09 AM

They only raised 10 percent of their operating costs through ticket sales? This was very surprising to me, I am surprised they are not doing more joint ventures with other innovative companies, sharing expenses, etc.

#67 Kathleen O'Connell

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Posted 16 June 2011 - 04:13 AM

They only raised 10 percent of their operating costs through ticket sales? This was very surprising to me, I am surprised they are not doing more joint ventures with other innovative companies, sharing expenses, etc.


I past seasons NYCO regularly shared productions with other companies -- Houston's production of Handel's "Ariodante," e.g.-- and each season almost always included a production or two from the Glimmerglass festival. Some of their own productions might have been shared or hired out to other companies as well, but I haven't checked.

They threw their money at some real clunkers, though. They replaced a lovely and perfectly serviceable production of "Don Giovanni" with a dodo they abandoned after just one season.

#68 richard53dog

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Posted 16 June 2011 - 06:44 AM

They only raised 10 percent of their operating costs through ticket sales? This was very surprising to me, I am surprised they are not doing more joint ventures with other innovative companies, sharing expenses, etc.



Jayne, I believe that figure, which is pretty horrifying, only refers to the last two years, where attendance has been really poor.

Basically this crisis has been brewing since 9/11. NYC's finances, which depended a lot on tourism, were of course a byproduct casualty of that terrible event.

Other arts organizations (theater, opera, symphony as well as ballet and other forms of dance) slowly recovered from that hit but NYCO started making a lot of questionable decisions right about then. I think they started to lose their way in the early years of the aughts and by the end of the decade were hit by a triple play of the fiasco over engaging Mortier/the dark season when NYST was being revamped/the 2008 recession.

They've always had ups and downs, they almost went out of business during the late 50s and then in the early 80s, so this isn't their only crisis but it's the worst.

Perhaps after a year or two of niche type seasons, they can gradually expand again. I'd really miss them terribly if they went under although the last 5 or 6 years haven't attracted me to any of their performances.

#69 miliosr

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Posted 22 June 2011 - 03:36 AM

More City Opera drama:

http://www.nytimes.c...l?_r=1&ref=arts

#70 abatt

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Posted 12 July 2011 - 05:15 AM

Link to an article on potential possible rental options for the Koch:

http://www.nytimes.c...r.html?ref=arts

#71 bart

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Posted 12 July 2011 - 08:18 AM

Thanks, abatt.

Peter Martins, the ballet company’s ballet’s master in chief, has long talked of making the theater a world destination for dance.


An appealing idea for dance lovers, but the last paragraph, devoted to possible future tenants, struck me as slightly weird:

Among the likely candidates to fill regular slots are the San Francisco Ballet, the Boston Ballet, Alvin Ailey Dance Theater and several international companies, like the Royal Danish Ballet, the Stuttgart Ballet and the Royal Ballet in London.

Surely some of those dance companies would need an umbrella organization to invite and "present" them. I can't see them undertaking the risk of renting the hall themselves -- especially for "regular" seasons. Especially those financially strapped American companies. A festival of visiting companies -- of which any or all of the companies mentioned could of course be included -- does seem practical..

Does the Joyce, mentioned in the article as a possible presenter for part of the City Opera's old commitment, have the resources and connections to make this kind of thing work in a theater of this size?

And ... why not a festival of visiting opera companies? After all, wasn't a major factor behind those expansive renovations to improve the acoustics for opera performances? More ballet, definitely. Even modern dance. But is this desirable if the price that has to be paid is ... less opera?

Meanwhile the NYC Opera and the unions representing orchestra and chorus seem even more bogged down in disagreements. NYCO is seeking other venues, but also seem to be in the process of redefining themselves as a version of a freelance or even a pickup company.
http://www.nytimes.c....html?ref=music

#72 Anthony_NYC

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Posted 12 July 2011 - 09:09 AM

Peter Martins, the ballet company’s ballet’s master in chief, has long talked of making the theater a world destination for dance.

An appealing idea for dance lovers, but the last paragraph, devoted to possible future tenants, struck me as slightly weird:

Among the likely candidates to fill regular slots are the San Francisco Ballet, the Boston Ballet, Alvin Ailey Dance Theater and several international companies, like the Royal Danish Ballet, the Stuttgart Ballet and the Royal Ballet in London.

Surely some of those dance companies would need an umbrella organization to invite and "present" them.

You're probably right about that. But it is an appealing idea, having at Lincoln Center a sort of Carnegie Hall for dance. The Joyce is great but too small for large ballet productions. And City Center seems to have a pretty full season already.

I wonder what makes more economic sense, to bring in a company's already-rehearsed orchestra or to hold rehearsals with a house orchestra put at the disposal of visiting companies. If that latter, maybe Lincoln Center could help alleviate some of NYC Opera's union troubles as reported in today's paper. But then there's the complication of figuring out how many weeks of work you can promise the musicians since not all ballets require an orchestra.

#73 ksk04

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Posted 12 July 2011 - 02:27 PM

This part makes me cringe from the Times article abatt posted (thank you):

Many in the dance world are concerned that the Koch could become a glorified rental house, rather than a stage with a clear master and mission. “There should be someone with a vision to create that place,” said Sergei Danilian, an arts manager who for 17 years has presented dance at City Center, adding, “It should become the world center for dance.”


Better hope it's not him though! He has wrecked enough damage with his "visions" over here on Segerstrom Center, I don't wish more of his influence on you guys.


I don't see why ABT doesn't at least consider doing a fall rep season at State. They wouldn't need to abandon the Met, but it seems like a more stable option than what they've been dealing with at City Center.

#74 abatt

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Posted 14 July 2011 - 01:21 PM

Well, the Koch has its first new dance company as tenant, Paul Taylor. I guess there is no such thing as loyalty when it comes to business. Paul Taylor has performed at City Center for so many years.

http://www.nytimes.c...r.html?ref=arts

#75 miliosr

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Posted 14 July 2011 - 03:44 PM

Well, the Koch has its first new dance company as tenant, Paul Taylor. I guess there is no such thing as loyalty when it comes to business. Paul Taylor has performed at City Center for so many years.

http://www.nytimes.c...r.html?ref=arts

It does leave a bit of a sour taste in one's mouth.

How do the stage sizes compare? Will Taylor's works "fill" the stage??


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