Desperate Met pays a small fortune to be heard in New York

Desperate Met pays a small fortune to be heard in New York


norman lebrecht

June 20, 2014

We’ve been warning that the Metropolitan Opera was losing the media war.

This morning we received proof.

A full-page ad in the New York Times explains the Met’s position in cost-cutting negotiations with the unions.

It has all been said before in interviews. But the Met has lost the argument.

Now it’s having to pay a five-digit sum, certainly not far short of $30,000, to try and buy back public support.

met ad






The Times reported: The Met’s board took out an advertisement on Friday in The New York Times endorsing the proposal to cut labor costs, saying that while rising donations had offset declining box office revenues, “the level of giving simply cannot continue to grow faster than our rising costs.”


Here’s what the musicians think of it all.


  • Sarah says:

    Evidently neither Gelb nor the Board know that the MN Orchestra’s forthcoming season, which was basically planned in six weeks by Osmo Vanska and the musicians, is generating more excitement than any season has in YEARS, since – oh, about the time the banksters decided to deep-six the orchestra . . . .

    Why is this all sounding extremely familiar?

  • Stay Loose says:

    Does anyone have the P&L from the HD broadcasts and the SiriusXM radio contracts? What are the artists paid for the broadcasts? Are these not profitable? Don’t they more than make up for the reduced house box office figures? If not, why aren’t they considered a failed experiment?

    Where are these numbers?

  • thad says:

    When I read about the Met stagehands being paid hundreds of thousands of dollars a year, my reaction was “if I were a rich guy with money to donate to a worthy cause, why would I give to an outfit that let itself be ripped off by this inbred mafia?”

    With Met revenues increasingly dependent on donors, that’s probably what is going through Gelb’s mind. There is a lot of pressure on non-profits to have their fiscal house in order. Letting yourself get shaken down by union goons is a good way to scare away potential donors.

  • Steve osteve says:

    Does anyone actually give a shit?