Lyric Opera entered into a swap agreement in 2006 to cover $40 million in bonds. The fixed rate that Lyric’s paying is 3.8 percent, while the variable rate it’s getting in return is now 1.58 percent. Over the 12 years that the swap has existed, Lyric’s paid about $16.8 million for it. During that same period, the cost of interest on the bonds amounted to about $4 million. But Lyric is hardly alone in this. A look at financial statements from a few randomly selected cultural organizations suggests that it’s the rule for our major institutions, not the exception.