Low earners and students pay more: Good news! Going to the opera in Gotham just got that much cheaper!
Plainly, the Metropolitan Opera was a bargain before—but from now on, the bargain is bigger. Daniel Wakin reports the good news in today’s New York Times:
WAKIN (2/27/13): Attendance is down this season at the Metropolitan Opera, and officials there acknowledge that the fault is their own. They made going to the opera too expensive.They're practically giving Otello away! Average price: $156. Truly, you can’t beat that!
So in a rarity in the rarefied world of the performing arts, the Met said it would reduce ticket prices next season. The average cost of admission will drop by 10 percent, or to $156 from $174, Peter Gelb, the general manager, said in a recent interview.
Having said that, let us also say this: In keeping with the societal zeitgeist, everyone will be paying less—except college students and low earners. In keeping with the society's drift, these folk will now pay more:
WAKIN (continuing directly): The lower ticket prices will come in a 2013-14 season that includes the return of the music director James Levine to the pit after a two-year absence; an unusual appearance by a female conductor, Jane Glover; and, surprisingly, the first time Anna Netrebko, the Russian diva, will tackle one of the most famous Russian roles at the Met.Thousands of people will be paying less. Example: If you buy an orchestra aisle seat, your price will be cut by thirty bucks, all the way down to $330.
Experiencing those moments will still not be cheap, but the new ticket pricing will ease sticker shock. For example, an orchestra aisle seat that is $360 this season will be $330, and a grand tier box seat will go to $180 from $195. In all, more than 2,000 seats for each performance will cost less, the Met said. One exception will be the $20 seats in the rear of the family circle, which will rise by $5.
As usual, though, there is one exception: If you buy the cheapest seats, you will have to pay more! Seats in the rear of the Family Circle will rise by 25 percent.
(The Family Circle is the level above the Balcony. The seats in question are the seats in the rear of this oddly-named section. To confirm these facts, just click here.)
With this move, the Metropolitan Opera moves fully into the present day. The wealthiest patrons will get to pay less.
Students, also known as “the takers,” will be asked to kick in a bit more.