Wednesday, June 01, 2016


Arts organizations send me online surveys about one thing or another at least once a month; sometimes I get one a week. This week, I got two in one day. 

One was the Metropolitan Opera, asking me about Met Opera on Demand. The other was from San Francisco Symphony, trying to find out what I think of their advertising.

These surveys very often fail to ask the questions I'd like to answer, so a suggestion for every last arts organization that conducts surveys: provide a free form text box with the question "Is there anything else you'd like us to know?" or something to that effect. You will get interesting answers.

For myself, I don't care about most of what's on these surveys. I go to concerts and opera performances to hear music, and what I care about most is repertory that I've never heard. I do not care what SFS ads look like and they have no effect on whether I buy tickets. I care about what's being performed and who is performing it. I told the Met that what I wanted from Met Opera on Demand was the same thing I wanted from the Met: haul yourselves out of the 19th c. and perform more music, a lot more, written after Turandot. In fact, consider annual commissions and shifting the repertory radically toward operas written after 1926. (Yes, Turandot is approaching its 100th birthday.)

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