Political war over Arena di Verona as 300 face job loss

With the Arena suspended in bankruptcy, the fight has begun over its future. Our correspondent writes:

The political battle in Verona has just started and will soon turn national. The local PD (Democratic Party) is calling for an extraordinary city council session, accusing Mayor Flavio Tosi of killing the Arena.

Other political parties are calling for minister Dario Franceschini to appoint a new intendant, independent of the Mayor. Some political forces have a hidden agenda of transforming Arena di Verona into a venue for pop events.

All this takes place during an electoral campaign with a referendum in two Sundays and municipal elections in several large cities in June.

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  • This story remind me the Rome Opera House problems that occurred a couple of years ago. This time also the problem is a huge deficit in administration. The problem in my country is that the people that is guilty of bad administration is often only removed and placed in another Opera House to make other problems, and workers pay for his or her mistakes. In the Verona case anyway the Unions forced the people of the Arena not to accept a plan of reduction, they voted and the result has been 132 against the plan and 130 in favour of this plan. The deficit is anyway unacceptable in an Opera House like Verona also because the Arena sells many thousands of tickets more than all the other Italian opera house. As usual one of the problem is also that singers, conductors, stage directors but also artistic directors are overpayed. The city of Verona is wonderful but its economy depends in a big part by the Arena summer season and if the Arena will close the city will have a big economy crisis. The situation is really difficult and we can only hope that the Minister Franceschini will not accept the decision of the Mayor and will send a high commissioner to Verona. Anyway the Arena is already used sometimes for pop events.

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