mercoledì 24 settembre 2014

Franceschini urges Roma Opera to stop 'self-harm'

Calls for modern management to protect unions, end conflict

(ANSA) - Turin, September 23 - Italy's Culture Minister Dario Franceschini on Tuesday urged Rome Opera to "stop its self-harm" and "climate of conflict" that pushed iconic conductor Riccaro Muti to abruptly quit. "You have to manage in a modern way so that protection of the sacrosanct protection of trade union rights does not become a hindrance to modernization," the minister added, speaking outside a summit of European culture ministers in the northern city of Turin. Even in the arts, there is global competition and companies must be well-managed to cope with the challenge, he said.

Rome's opera house was left in disarray after Muti quit at the weekend citing labour strife, mismanagement and cash problems which he said deprived him of the necessary "serenity" to work. Labour unions echoed Rome Mayor Ignazio Marino and Opera General Manager Carlo Fuortes in hoping the flamboyant Naples-born conductor, 73, would change his mind.

In a letter to the director of the fractious opera house, Muti withdrew from planned productions of Verdi's Aida opening in November and Mozart's The Marriage of Figaro, for spring 2015. "There are no conditions (there) to ensure the serenity necessary to my leading successful productions," Muti wrote to Fuentes. "Unfortunately, despite all my efforts to contribute to your cause," Muti wrote, problems of state and city funding, management authority and labour peace "have emerged (again) in just the last few days". 

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