Bulgaria's Plovdiv, Ruse Protest Local Operas Cut
Municipal authorities in Bulgarian cities of Plovdiv and Russe have stood Monday in support of local operas and philharmonic societies, which are facing a cut-down as a part of reforms advanced by the Bulgarian Ministry of Culture.
Plovdiv's mayor Slavcho Atanasov said that he would lead to Sofia a protest of Plovdiv musicians, artists and other citizens, should he fail to convince Bulgarian Minister of Culture Vezhdi Rashidov to give up a proposal to strip the city's Opera and Philharmonic Society of its opera functions.
Similarly, the Municipal Council of Russe has gathered a working group which came up with a proposal to minister Rashidov to back down on his idea to merge the city opera house with its philharmonic society, thus virtually destroying the latter.
This news comes amid looming discontent, reported last week, in Bulgarian theater and music circles regarding the proposed reforms in the area of theater, opera and philharmonic societies.
Plovdiv is Bulgaria's third-largest city and the biggest in southern Bulgaria. The Danube city of Russe is the largest in the north-eastern part of the country, famed as a commercial hub in the XIX century and dubbed “little Vienna”. Both cities have a strong tradition and renown as centers of arts and culture in Bulgaria.
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"Hey you forgot to say that they should do the same to all the schools, hospitals, theaters, kindergartens, etc. Basically close everything down and become an American. You can always hop on the train and go to Sofia if you have to, otherwise you can always watch the hospital on TV!"
I was talking about cultural venues, not basic services. If you can't tell the difference, you are not as smart as you think. I also said that any cultural event that generates revenue and is self-sustaining can remain. Subsidizing opera or any other art form or sport on the tax payer's dime is just wrong.
“Leave one opera house open in Sofia, pull all the best tallent into it, and close down the rest of them. You can see opera on TV, you don't have to see it in person.”
Hey you forgot to say that they should do the same to all the schools, hospitals, theaters, kindergartens, etc. Basically close everything down and become an American. You can always hop on the train and go to Sofia if you have to, otherwise you can always watch the hospital on TV!
Yeah, let Nella teach you some broke and insolvent American capitalism and you’ll be okay!
No wonder Europeans don’t want to live in the US anymore.
(I told you Bulgaria was a better country 20 years ago!)
If these opera companies are self-sustaining by the sale of tickets and TV programming, then they should be allowed to exist. If they are depending on public funds, then they should be closed down. The tax payer a.k.a. the government budget should not be forced to subsidize any art form that is not self-sustaining. It reeks of communism. Leave one opera house open in Sofia, pull all the best tallent into it, and close down the rest of them. You can see opera on TV, you don't have to see it in person. If you absolutely MUST see it live, trek to Sofia for the weekend.
Bulgaria has four opera groups (Sofia, Plovdiv, Stara Zagora and Ruse) for 7.5 million inhabitants. The Netherlands, with twice as many inhabitants, has three (Amsterdam, Maastricht and a travelling one). Time to adjust the number of groups in Bulgaria to the means and audience available, to one in Sofia and a travelling one serving Plovdiv, Stara Zagora, Ruse and the Black Sea coast.