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Just in: Paris Opera chief quits over budget cuts

Nicolas Joel has informed the French Minister of Culture that he will not seek a second term as director of the Opéra in face of budget cuts of 2.5 percent in each of the next three years.

Joel’s term is up in 2015. Many will conclude that he is giving up without a fight.

The previous Paris director, Gerard Mortier, is sticking to his present job at the Tearo Real in Madrid, despite an immediate budget cut of 35 percent. There may be more to this resignation than meets the eye. The cuts may be worse than presently stated. Read Joel’s statement here.

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  1. Thomas Moser says:

    Unfortunately, to be expected. It is impossible to run an international theatre with the kind of buget-cuts which are being made world-wide. A director is forced to make difficult decisions and I can well understand why a director who was hired as a result of his artistic track-record is reluctant and indeed unable to function when he discovers that the single quality he needs to have is that of a bookkeeper. Too bad. All of our “international” theatres are in great danger of suddenly seeming to be quite “provincial”. Mortier will undoubtedly stay in Madrid as long as the austerity doesn´t extend to HIS salary ! :-))

  2. Time for the European theatres to learn the fine art of fund raising. Many have never had to do it, or did very little of it. 2.5% cuts in State support is a joke.

  3. If this were about an American company, the problem clearly would be that we poor uneducated Americans are just to stupid to understand the need for the arts. And we don’t understand the opera anyway. And on and on.

    I wonder how much is the state is cutting the Met’s funding? Oh, wait.

  4. Alessandro Piani says:

    Here the name of the next big boss at PAris Opera on 2015: Stephane Lissner, he’ll quit La Scala in Milan after expo 2015 hosted by the town of Milan.
    in the same article a link about the Lissner golden salary at Teatro alla Scala

  5. Graf Nugent says:

    Nicolas Joel has been told by French Culture ‘Minister’ Aurélie Filippetti he won’t be given a second term. It’s a question of politics. NJ is right wing and Hollande’s band of merry men, women, transsexuals and equal opportunity freeloaders want a bit more ‘bien pensance’ at the head of an international institution. You see it at national level the whole time in this country. NJ is a superb theatre manager who understands the running of a large house like no other and surely won’t need to sign on at his local Job Centre come 2015.

  6. Joel ran Toulouse with skill: casting well above it’s “provincial” status; varied rep and a production standard that was visually polished if conservative. Before that his theatre & music background was deep and extensive. So if he really can’t pull the Paris Opera together in the face of these cuts I wonder who could?

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