The End is near—but which end?

Jul 9, 2005 10:06 pm
There has been an ongoing debate about the End of Opera. I’m not sure who is winning—and perhaps the positions are not contradictory.

On one side we have the End of the Genre argument—that classical and opera sales have dropped, there is no longer the big money for great studio recordings and the golden age of opera recording has ended:
http://www.scena.org/columns/lebrecht/031231-NL-recording.html

And then there is the End of the Dinosaurs argument—that the big money, big name singers, conductors and record labels—the dinosaurs—are dying out allowing for the proliferation of small labels, lesser known talents and live recordings to flood the market with a greater variety recordings, better quality performances, and seldom heard works:
http://www.therestisnoise.com/2005/01/the_cassandra_a.html

While the major labels die off or cut back we see more and more opera available on sound and video recordings, on the radio, and online. There is a greater variety of choices in performers, repertory than ever before. The technical means to produce and distribute a great studio recording are less expensive than ever before. The expertise may still be expensive—in engineering, performers and most of all practice and rehearsal time. But the advantage may now be moving toward the content producer and away from the content distributor. This could lead to the seeming paradox of fewer large recording companies and far more, and perhaps even better, recordings.

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~ by severalfourmany on February 9, 2005.

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