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Our motto: "Critical thinking in the cheap seats." Unbiased, honest classical music and opera opinions, occasional obituaries and classical news reporting, since 2007. All written content © 2016 by Paul J. Pelkonen. For more about Superconductor, visit this link. For advertising rates, click this link. Follow us on Facebook.

Monday, July 21, 2014

The Show Must Go On

The Met labor negotiations and the state of the 2014-15 Metropolitan Opera Preview.
by Paul J. Pelkonen
Metropolitan Opera manager Peter Gelb is trying to keep all his balls (and a banana) in the air.
Original image of Peter Gelb © 2014 The Metropolitan Opera. Cartoon image from 

Queen's album Innuendo, based on an image from the French artist J.J. Grandville. 
Logos of AGMA, Local 1 and Local 802 are © the respective unions. 
If you've read Superconductor for a while you know that one of the "trademark" article series on this blog is the extensive and detailed Metropolitan Opera Preview, where we break down all the productions in the coming season and hopefully entertain readers in the process..

Those previews get posted in the summer as part of our preview of the coming season. Then, over the next nine months, the articles get re-posted and updated to reflect casting change and news stories, usually a week before the shows take the stage.

However, as the clock ticks down on the labor negotiations between the Met and fifteen of its labor unions (whose collective bargaining agreements all expire on July 31) there is some question as to whether or not there will be a full, or even partial schedule of performances at America's biggest opera house.

Since Superconductor believes in covering its bases (as well as its basses, baritones and tenors) it's time to start working on this year's Met preview. So as of this writing, there will be twenty-four articles for the six new productions and eighteen revivals.

Each article will include plot previews, notes on the performers, recording recommendations and general information on opening dates for each show. They'll be written over the next month and will appear on the blog as part of the run-up to the (currently scheduled) opening night of September 22, which is scheduled to feature a new production of Le Nozze di Figaro.

Alongside this, Superconductor will also do its best to cover the labor negotiations as general manager Peter Gelb does battle with the orchestra, singers, dancers, stage crew, ushers....in fact with the whole opera company. As of this writing, things don't look good. But the show must go on.

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Critical Thinking in the Cheap Seats

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Since 2007, Superconductor has grown from an occasional concert or CD review to a near-daily publication covering classical music, opera and the arts in and around NYC, with excursions to Boston, Philadelphia, and upstate NY. I am a freelance writer living and working in Brooklyn NY. And no, I'm not a conductor.