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Subject: Foreign Artists working at the Met
From: Kiwi <[log in to unmask]>
Reply-To:Kiwi <[log in to unmask]>
Date:Wed, 2 Aug 2017 06:48:23 -0400
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While none of us can read JK's mind, I have talked with other prominent 
European artists about why they are not coming to America.  The reasons vary 
but for those with younger families, the commute can be treacherous:  in 
Europe, as one told me, you can be home is a a couple of hours so darting 
back to the house over the weekends or during breaks in performances is 
simple.  Here, the flight time makes it impossible.

Then there is the money issue, and it's not just the lower salary Gelb 
offers.   The strength of the dollar is an issue for Europeans, as is the 
cost of staying in an a truly expensive city like NYC, where of necessity 
you have to stay close to the theater and pay pretty stiff rental fees.

Then there is Gelb himself, whom is not loved by all the singers (a minor 
point but still one to consider) and the fact he doesn't necessary off 
contracts to all that many Europeans:  he is after only the biggest names 
and the prettiest people. There are a a host of big named European singers 
who simply don't fit his preferred 'star' requirements and are never asked 
to come.   While he has an open door policy for a handful of named singers, 
it is largely a closed door for others.

Then there is the city itself:  natives may love it, short term visitors may 
be enthralled, but temporary workers may feel trapped.

Should we mention the immigration and customs issues?

Finally, the Met has simply lost a lot of luster during the Gelb regime.  A 
couple of singers I talked to said European theaters offer greater allure 
and rewards and have more cache than the Met has now.  It is no longer 
important to have to include the Met in your resume, not if you can have La 
Scala, Covent Garden, Staatsoper and more.

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