Review: funding and governance of opera companies

By The Mandarin

July 31, 2014

Opera Australia’s Sydney Harbour production of Carmen earlier this year

Opera companies — the most heavily subsidised artistic pursuits — will be scrutinised as part of a federal government review.

Arts Minister George Brandis is still finalising the terms of reference, but has announced a panel including arts administrator Dr Helen Nugent, artistic director Moffatt Oxenbould and impresario Andrew McKinnon to lead the work.

Opera Australia — which receives the largest share of Australia Council arts funding –will be scrutinised for “artistic vibrancy, engagement with audiences and financial positions”, along with the State Opera of South Australia, West Australian Opera and Opera Queensland. Brandis said in a statement:

“The purpose of the enquiry is to ensure that Australian audiences continue to enjoy opera of the highest quality and that the opera companies can operate in a financially sustainable way.”

The panel will seek public submissions before reporting to Brandis in “early 2015”.

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