Met Opera Drama

Monday, August 04, 2014

An ominous sky hangs over the Metropolitan Opera House The Metropolitan Opera House at Lincoln Center. (Flickr/nicolemarti)

Jennifer Maloney, arts reporter for the Greater New York section of The Wall Street Journal, explains the labor dispute threatening to disrupt the Met's next season.  The threatened lockout was pushed back a week as an independent analyst looks at the financial data.


Jennifer Maloney

Comments [11]

Laurie from NYC, NY

Why is there no discussion about Gelb's proposal to slash pension payments by 50 percent for recent hires, despite what was in the contract? One listener asks why the acrimony-- seems that more information about his proposals needs to be made public.

Aug. 05 2014 02:49 PM
Concerned from Manhattan

I wish we could organize a rally for every subscriber that has been turned off by Gelb's shows. There are so many people that would love to see and end to the Euro-trash he's putting on stage.

Aug. 05 2014 11:47 AM
Manny Gutierrez

Acrimony comes from a hard working group of highly skilled workers doing what is requested by management on choices management made and then be blamed for the expense of the choice!! Peter Gelb IS a visionary and has definitely put Opera back on the front burner and has created interest in an art form that Had been on a downward spiral in the past. He has his good points, however, His artistic choices are not the company's fault or responsibility and putting the "blame" on the staff required to make his vision come true...well, they should NOT be penalized. We have an amazing group of talented (in EVERY department) dedicated, proud to work here, house of people who LOVE the Met and all it puts out. Every department at the Met has given their suggestions as to how to save money, the orchestra came up with $35 million alone...all have been rejected because they are not the 17+% of cuts required by Mr. Gelb. We who work here genuinely LOVE our jobs and have high respect for each other and the product being put out at the Met, we just want to be on the same page as Mr.Gelb in steering this great ship back in to the black...together as collaborators of a great art coming to fruition not as enemies burying the hatchet.

Aug. 05 2014 09:11 AM
Joyce from NYC

The members of the Met chorus make $200,000 per year. What do the stage hands make? If it is $200,000 per year, they are being short-changed. Stage hands at Carnegie Hall make $400,000.

Ooops. sorry, we are not supposed to know these things.

Aug. 04 2014 11:58 AM
lin from NYC

Comment above regarding elite rich going to opera. Apparently the riich are not the
majority of attendees. If it were we wouldn't be having this conversation to begin

Aug. 04 2014 11:49 AM
Sher from lower Manhattan

ALL Sides and people in this matter need to tuck in a little bit. Just rein in somewhat all around. Enough New productions have come on line recently; Many were definitely UGLY - Do Not need many MORE New productions for a few years - And stop canceling gorgeous, appropriate, elegant productions that suit the period and setting, such as Der Rosenkavalier recently.

Aug. 04 2014 11:32 AM
Bob from Westchester

Anyone else find it curious that CBS/60 Minutes chose 2 weeks ago to re-run a very laudatory piece on Peter Gelb and his initiatives (segment entitled "The Greatest Show on Earth")? Then Maureen Dowd writes a similar praiseworthy column in the Times the next Sunday? Coincidence? - or have the NYC elite decided it's time to go after the unions? After all, Peter Gelb is the son of the former Times managing editor Arthur Gelb -- so it's OK for him to get big raises and bonuses while the workers have to take big cuts. You don't have to be a conspiracy theorist to wonder about this.

Aug. 04 2014 11:31 AM
Vmr from Nj

Deeply concerned regarding my union brothers and sisters. The met provides a HUGE source of work and income . Peter Gelb is out if control! We must support this even if not am opera fan . The performing arts in this city will look to this as a precident

Aug. 04 2014 11:31 AM

Should we really care that very well-off people are quibbling with rich people about the details of providing entertainment for an even richer audience?

Aug. 04 2014 11:31 AM
Allison from Brooklyn

Is Peter Gelb going to take a pay cut? I find it somewhat jerky to complain that the artists at the Met make too much money at $200k when he makes $1.4M.

He raised prices for tickets and angered the people who go and spent too much money on new productions that I just don't like.

I think he's done a bad job and this threatened lock out makes me so mad!

Aug. 04 2014 11:25 AM
C.E. Connelly from Manhattan

Can you ask your guests to clarify why there is so much acrimony?

Why would the Met and their unions risk a lockout given how destructive similar disputes have been to other cultural institutions around the country?

Aug. 04 2014 11:24 AM

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