Classical KUSC Arts Alive Blog

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What Happened in San Diego? Digging into the Shocking Opera Shutdown.

Posted By: Brian Lauritzen · 4/4/2014 1:07:00 PM

Jaws hit the floor a few weeks ago when the well-respected San Diego Opera announced they were out of money and closing their doors. In the weeks since the news hit, the picture of what happened with the Opera hasn't gotten much clearer. So we called Jim Chute, U-T San Diego's music and art critic, and had him to take us through the twists and turns at San Diego Opera. He told us even the opera's pit orchestra was surprised by the news. Here's our entire conversation (a version of this will air on Arts Alive, Saturday, April 5th at 8AM).

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  1. Martha Schöfbeck posted on 04/10/2014 01:44 PM
    I was shocked when I read about the closure of San Diego Opera House. In Austria the state grants sufficient funds to first class cultural institutions so that everybody - and I mean everybody- can afford to enjoy the beauty of an opera performance. Music is regarded as a necessity and kids can learn to play a mucsiacl instrument in special institutions starting at the age of 3. I think there must be more to life than having a 9 to 5 job and it's the damned duty of the government to support musicians and cultural institutions.
    1. Ken Harms posted on 04/13/2014 08:33 AM
      @Martha Schöfbeck Very sweet, Martha -- and I certainly agree 100%. All opera, all classical concerts, all art museums, all ballet should be, let's go for it, free. Yes, 100% supported by increasing taxes on my 30-something daughters who are fighting the good fight to raise families. Of course, we have to figure out how to force the 1%, who already provide close to 70% of the current funding, to continue their charity. Might be hard since the current influence they have on boards and the like will disappear -- the Government will take control, thank goodness.

      While we're at it, to provide the next generation or artists, dancers, singers and musicians, free complete educations for all, paid for by increased property taxes -- always hated Prop 13, right?

      Or keep all this out of the already-high taxes imposed on people with no interest and unwilling to pay for it? I gladly supported cutting the government-paid music programs in my kids' schools -- and paid for the dance, piano and voice lessons. No, I am not a tiger dad -- I invested in a richer life for them. Now if only I could persuade them to go to opera with me!
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