Is a label boss the right person to run an opera house?main
Bogdan Roscic, who was announced this morning as the next director of the Vienna State Opera, is the second successive head of the Sony Classical label to run an international house.
His predecessor, Peter Gelb, has been general manager of the Metropolitan Opera since 2006.
Neither Gelb nor Roscic had prior experience of running an opera house.
Gelb’s plan for the Met has been movie-driven. He launched Live from the Met in cinemas across the world and imported Hollywood-style directors to liven up his new productions.
The consequence has been a catastrophic fall in ticket sales, from near-capacity to below 70 percent.
The medicine may have worked, but the patient is dying. Over time, Gelb realised just how much he had bitten off.
What Roscic plans for the Vienna Opera remains to be revealed. But he was chosen, as Gelb was, for his reputed success at Sony Classical – actually, a steep sales decline – and he will be keen to put his mus-biz genius to work on a stately institution that is achieving its best results for years.
Stand by for the Met Story, mark 2.