"We are currently projecting the box office to achieve 76 percent of capacity versus a budget of 80 percent, resulting in a shortfall of $4,303,000," Volpe wrote in Dec. 12-dated memorandum to Met department heads, a copy of which was obtained Thursday by The Associated Press.76 percent! And in a boom year, with good casting.
(The sold-out Rigoletto aside, the only thing I've been to of late has been An American Tragedy. That seemed pretty full on both occasions, but I now wonder how much of it was paper.)
Incoming general manager Peter Gelb's instinct seems to be to up the stakes with more and trendier new productions. Is this, I wonder, a pitch for the local market or for the transatlantic one depressed since 9/11?