The real issue that's being ignored here is that the fine arts, while we feel that we should value them as an important part of our culture, have a rapidly shrinking audience, especially here in Portland where altnerative arts (especially the DIY arts) are thriving.
The Ballet and the Symphony aren't having budget problems because of the economy. They have chronic budget problems and are routinely bailed out by foundations and generous individuals. These large orgs like the ballet (or the Art Museum!) are simply not sustainable in their current model - and they haven't been for some time. Their audiences are growing older and dying, and the new generation - especially in pdx - isn't, and won't start, going to the Opera. In fact, there is serious antagonism against such fiscally irresponsible and out of touch organizations amongst the young generation of artists.
The Ballet et al needs to seriously rethink not only their business model but their mission and their future.
posted 3 years, 10 months ago
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