FGO cuts season down to just three operas in 2023-24

By Lawrence Budmen

Florida Grand Opera will present just three productions during the 2023-2024 season. When the company opened the Arsht Center’s Ziff Ballet Opera House in 2006-2007, it presented a six-opera season.

In addition to producing one less opera than in recent seasons, the company’s repertoire choices will result in the most conservative schedule in more than a decade.  There will be no full operas produced at Miami’s Arsht Center or Fort Lauderdale’s Broward Center between January and April at the height of the season when many opera-loving seasonal visitors are in South Florida.

In a statement, FGO general director and CEO Susan Danis said “We could not get the correct dates in the ‘third slot’ as we call it. The extra challenge of two venues meant we would still be performing the second opera at the Broward Center and about to open the next opera at the Arsht. We don’t have that kind of people power resources and quality would be affected. We don’t want to do that.” Danis indicated there will be other events during the break to be announced at a later date.

The season opens with Verdi’s La Traviata November 11-14 at the Arsht Center and November 30 and December 2 at the Broward Center. Leoncavallo’s I Pagliacci (staged as a stand-alone work rather than as part of the usual double bill with Cavalleria Rusticana) will be heard in Miami January 27-30, 2024 and February 8 and 10 in Fort Lauderdale. Puccini’s La Bohéme concludes the truncated season April 6-8 in Miami and May 2 and 4 in Fort Lauderdale.


Posted in News

5 Responses to “FGO cuts season down to just three operas in 2023-24”

  1. Posted Mar 14, 2023 at 12:22 pm by Michael Sturgulewski

    Traviata, Boheme and Cav&Pag.

    Yet another joke of a season to boycott.

    Has anyone in FGO even heard of German operas and let alone know how much better they are compared to the overdone and overrated Italian works you peddle annually.

    I can’t even remember the last opera I attended in Miami. I think it was the REGINA you did over twenty years ago.

  2. Posted Mar 14, 2023 at 3:37 pm by Wolfgang731

    Hate to be that person but I get the sinking feeling that FGO won’t be around past next season. The company has had some great moments in its 80 years but it would appear that there is little to no demand for opera in that community any longer. It’s a shame.

  3. Posted Apr 30, 2023 at 10:50 pm by JGrantham

    I’ve whined endlessly over the years that the FGO only knows how to recycle the same tired operas over and over again: Boheme, Traviata, Rigoletto and Barber of Seville and one or two more. Yes, they’re all great operas, and sure for whatever reason they’re terrified of stepping out of conservative repertoire, but still? Even if you want to be ultra-conservative: Mozart only once in a blue moon? One production in one single season of Wagner in its entire history since the 1950s?

    Next season is ludicrous in its extreme. As if their offerings weren’t limited enough, next season is like a medley of their top 2 1/2 hits!

    If they want an example of a regional opera company (with probably a smaller audience than tri-county South Florida), they should look at the 2023 season at the Santa Fe Opera (https://www.santafeopera.org/). Nothing too radical for conservative South Florida: no (urk!) Wozzeck or Carmelites. Instead, they’re doing Dutchman, Pelleas, Rusulka, Orfeo (Monteverdi) and even a nice safe Tosca for good measure. Five works in the long-standing standard repertoire, while encompassing a variety of styles.

    If the FGO offered a season approaching something like this, I’d take a full-season subscription with primo seating in a heartbeat!

  4. Posted Jun 02, 2023 at 4:45 pm by DT

    While the upcoming season is certainly a bad sign of things to come for FGO, it’s probably not fair to try to compare them to Santa Fe. SFO has an operating budget between 25 to 30 million dollars, and is a summer destination for opera goers around the world.

    A better comparison might be Arizona or Minnesota. Both are companies that run similar operating budgets, but continue to run in the black or breaking even while programming interesting works that challenge the audience and invite new eyes to the product. FGO could stand to take a cue from these companies.

  5. Posted Jan 31, 2024 at 8:48 pm by Aida M Galvez

    It’s a shame that they cut the season to only three óperas. I love opera and go to each one of their productions. The first two this season have been excellent. I would love to see more variaty though, more German opera, French, what about Aida, Nabbuco, Andrea Chenier, Turandot, Les Contes d’Hoffmann, and some Wagner please.

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