Just in: Covent Garden closes a 95% season

Just in: Covent Garden closes a 95% season


norman lebrecht

July 16, 2014

Royal Opera director Kaspar Holten has tweeted the remarkable result. The house played opera to near-capacity in 2013/14.

Peter Gelb’s pessimistic pronouncements stand in splendid isolation.

If everyone else is filling the house and he is not, what conclusion can we draw?

Written on the Skin ? opera by George Benjamin


  • Nick says:

    When he tells his constituents that audiences for opera worldwide are dying off, he’s a liar! Plain and simple!

  • Hasbeen says:

    Metropolitan Opera..Capacity 3800

    Covent Garden Capacity 2256

    Not much of a comparison

  • Petros Linardos says:

    Christophe Eschenbach, Peter Gelb, Ny Philharmonic/Alan Gilbert, New York TImes/AnthonyTommasini: why doesn’t Slipped Disc treat with same respect it always treated Lorin Maazel? We’ve seen no shortage of criticism towards Maazel, but no lack of respect either.

  • Save the MET says:


  • Save the MET says:

    *Eschenbach a fine pianist, but problematic conductor. Critics have found him problematic for years.
    *Peter Gelb is an abject failure at running an opera house except for his HD program.
    *NY Phil/Alan Gilbert…ever looked at the long list of conductors who have led the NY Phil, Toscanini, Stokowski, Thomas, Bernstein, Mahler, Maazel, Masur, Mehta, Boulez, Mitropoulos, Rodzinski, Mengelberg, Stransky, Safonoff, Damrosch, Paur, Seidl. Where does Gilbert actually fit in…..hmmm, they did not want to spend the money to get Muti, so they settled for a guy on the cheap whose parents were in the orchestra and had led the Royal Stockholm Phil. He’s a servicable time beater. The standards of the orchestra has dropped as well. LA Phil, Boston SO, Chicago SO & Cincinnati SO all much finer ensembles.
    *NY Times/Tommasini was a shill for Gelb until he was called on the carpet for his soft touch reviews. Also his word choice can be unprofessional based upon his personal taste, for example, calling Jose Cura “hunky” in a review a few years back. The Allan Kozinn dust up and removal by Tommasini from the classical critics stable in favor of a young gay critic who he refers to as his successor was handled in an unprofessional manner. The young critic is frequently challenged on his lack of knowledge of music history and is not the quality and experienced writer Kozinn is.

    It would appear you enjoy mediocrity.

    • Petros Linardos says:

      My point was about attitude. In happen to have a very low regard for one of the people I mentioned, and no opinion for another.

  • celloman says:

    What does Gay have to do with any of these topics?

  • norman lebrecht says:

    In London, the opera audience is split between ROH and ENO. Together they have more seats to sell than the Met – and do so triumphantly.

    • John says:

      January 16 – Guardian
      Arts Council considers opera shakeup as ENO posts £2.2m loss

      English National Opera falls into red after losing £1.3m funding and filling only 71% of seats

  • NYMike says:

    City Opera had its own laughable board and CEOs over the past decade, It didn’t need Gelb.

  • John Sacher says:

    I would love to see Mr Lebrecht to take over for Mr Gelb- and see how many HOURS it takes for Lebrecht to run the place into the ground.

    Worst post ever