Thursday, May 08, 2008

The End of New Works

The San Francisco Ballet's colossally ambitious New Works Festival, with its ten world premiere ballets, finally packed it in on Tuesday evening.

The only serious misstep the company made was to jack up all the ticket prices and jettison senior/student rush tickets. In consequence, the $15 standing room areas were jammed three deep for most performances while huge chunks of seats were left empty.

The Ballet should have actually done the opposite, and offered three-ticket series at discounted rates to students and seniors who are passionate about new work. This is what was done for the San Francisco Symphony's American Mavericks Festival years ago, and it paid off handsomely for the organization in a newly energized customer base.

On Tuesday, I was taken to the performance by Sid Chen, who sings for the modern San Francisco chorus group Volti, is one of the six worldwide performers in M6 which is a new music ensemble devoted to Meredith Monk's works, is an artistic administrator of the Kronos Quartet, and in his spare time writes the indispensable "The Standing Room" blog (click here). He also has decided that he hates tutus, but he quite enjoyed the ballets himself.

Again, congratulations to the San Francisco Ballet on what was a very big deal, and for more links and writeups, check out Jolene's blog, "Saturday Matinee," by clicking here.


jolene said...

ugh, don't even get me started on the student rush not being offered... I actually come in from out of town and am willing to skip out on lab early (haha) and make the effort to get out there and watch a show multiple times and support the arts. Not having rush as an option REALLY made that inconvenient, esp since I couldn't be there in person to pickup standing room tickets unless I bribed a local there to do it for me. I'm thankful that SF Ballet still offers student rush, and I'm hoping against all hope they always maintain that policy of having the privilege of ordering over the phone the morning of. Another thing - the policy was horribly inconsistent; I actually picked up my student rush tickets right under the sign that said no student rush tickets were being offered that day. Even the box office stated that the policy may change daily.

Sometimes it really stinks to be a student in love with the arts. Why couldn't I be more interested in cheaper endeavors, like movie watching or hiking. Anyways, my rant is over - it still was a lovely season that I feel privileged to have experienced, although I would have gone more with rush. Thanks for the shoutout, and the pictures are great!

The Opera Tattler said...

*gasps* How can anyone hate tutus?! ;)