Passion for opera ....

On Overgrown Path is about passion. The following piece was posted as a comment by reader Henry Holland on my article about the management misfortunes of English National Opera. It is passionate enough to justify an upgrade from coach to business class:

'Re: the Guardian article.

Really, why bother? Why doesn't opera just up and die already, so that it doesn't clog up huge buildings on Bow Street and St. Martin's Lane? /sarcasm

16 million pounds (sorry, I'm a Yank, I don't have the pound sterling key on my computer) is all ENO gets? And that's considered a *high* subsidy? Yikes.

As for Sean Doran, he was in over his head and never should have been hired in the first place. Of course, if he'd revived Birtwistle's incredible The Mask of Orpheus--which did turn away business in its only run--I'd be wailing and lamenting his departure, so, oh well.

I'm really, really getting bored to feckin' tears with these "the sky is falling" articles/editorials about the arts. Almost every art form I love--classical, opera, rock/pop music, theatre, jazz, movies--is said to be a dinosaur, on their way out as the pathetically sought after 25 year olds don't bother with them, as we await the Glorious Digital Revolution to usher us in to a new world of.....what, exactly?

What about going after 40-60 year olds with kids out of the house and money to spend on something other than an Oxbridge education for little Graham and Sarah? Oh, wait, I know why: those audiences aren't "sexy", they aren't "cutting edge", they're not something that Mega Corporations can sell disposable, worthless tat to.

I frankly don't give a toss if opera is "relevant" to some loathsome spotty juvenile in trainers and a tracksuit. It's pathetic to see ENO chasing after them, it's doomed to failure.

As John Cleese says in the great Monty Python "Dirty fork at the restaurant" sketch: It mades me mad.'

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