We’ve been informed by sources close to the singers that Opera Australia has decided to give 12 months contracts to 16 contracted principals in 2014. The Artistic Director, Lydon Terracini, had wanted to stand most of them down for 10 weeks and told them effectively to claim the dole. Some of them contemplated emigration.
But resistance from the singers, their union, many OA subscribers, some parts of the Australian media and Slipped Disc, has forced the company to back down. The plan to lay off singers accompanied a strategy to produce more commercial stage musicals, at the expense of lyric opera.