Eugene Opera Scales Back Productions to Cut Costs

Classic Arts News   Eugene Opera Scales Back Productions to Cut Costs
The Eugene (Oregon) Opera will offer only one production next season, in an attempt to balance its budget, reports the Associated Press.

The nonprofit company, which was founded in 1977, laid off artistic director Robert Ashens and part-time production manager Jim Bradford in February. Its office in downtown Eugene is also being closed.

Recent productions have been critical and artistic successes, board president Sharon Heitman told the AP, but have not earned enough to sustain the organization, which has an estimated annual budget of $550,000 and ended its most recent season about $40,000 in debt.

Offenbach's Tales of Hoffman will be axed from next season's lineup but Gilbert and Sullivan's Pirates of Penzance will be performed as scheduled. The company is planning to concentrate on lighter, more audience-accessible works that are easier to sell.

Heitman told the AP, "The most important mission we have is to get back to the business of doing opera. And to do opera which draws an audience that will provide the ticket sales that will keep the company going."

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