Saturday, 28 July 2012

FWM to the Staatsoper’s rescue

So when, down by the Attersee lakeside, two public figures with a reputation for blurting out things they shouldn’t discover they are neighbours for the summer, the wise thing might have been to restrict conversation to talk of the weather and strudel recipes. For our entertainment, Austrian Finance Minister Maria Fekter decided instead to tell Franz Welser-Möst that the Staatsoper will have to tighten its belt to the tune of €10m – cuts that her ministerial colleague Claudia Schmied has already rejected. What better way to make Schmied back that up, FWM thought, than shoot the idea – and brainless Mitzi – down in flames in a TV interview (to be aired tomorrow, taster here). Fekter’s gob once got her named as one of the thirteen people destroying the global economy but it rather seems she’s met her match.


  1. Well, really, they did make a bit of a profit this year (I think) (and quite unlike some other government funded institutions or projects, one might note) and how much less are the poor singers supposed to accept for the honor of appearing on the Staatsoper Buhne? (One must check the daily exchange rate but it seems possible the top fee might be less than the Met!! - heaven forfend!!!!!!!).

    Not perhaps in every respect the most derzeitig venue (and one certain bloggers patronize with less than metronomic regularity - did you ever go to one of those Rosenkavaliers?) but, relatively speaking Euros reasonably well spent.

  2. Lower than the Met? Could well be, now that the euro has collapsed. They did have record takings this season but no surplus that would remotely offset a subsidy cut of that size, so the only response would have to be a reduction in the repertory of 10-15 operas. Fekter has rather blown it so that won’t happen, but euros well spent might be less done with the same money, and more consistently.

    I didn’t see the recent Stemme/Garanca Rosenkavalier. I did get to the Harteros performances in December, sadly too close to Christmas travel to find the time to write anything, but if a touch conspicuously modelled after Schwarzkopf in places, still something of great beauty and grace and probably the most stellar turn am Ring in the last season.