Philip Boroff wrote today in Bloomberg News about the apparent financial health of the Metropolitan Opera. In an article that depicts everything coming up roses for the MET on their current tax return, one should pause and ask some serious questions. It would appear salaries are up for Mr. Levine and their Master Electrician (who we have just learned is no longer employed at the MET, his replacement, P.J. Volpe is former Metropolitan Opera General Manager Joe Volpe's son.), Gelb is maintaining at a very high level and it infers that everything is a picture of good health. Fourty-One Million of good health it would seem. The major take home quote from his article,
The Met, the largest U.S. opera presenter, spent $321 million during 2010-2011, up 8 percent. It had a $41 million surplus, reversing a $25 million deficit the prior season, as contributions and revenue surged, according to the return.
Entire Bloomberg Article
But here is the rub:
1. Monies owed to the Metropolitan Opera Pension Fund in 2011 have yet to reach the account.
2. Money was taken in the 2011 season from the endowment of the Metropolitan Opera which has yet to be repaid.
3. The note on the Chagall frescoes with J. P. Morgan Chase has yet to be repaid in full.
Of course, that is the 41 Million Dollar question!
Updated 10:59 AM 6/20/12