Coordinator out; Augusta Opera cancels remainder of season

Monday, Feb. 2, 2009 2:48 PM
Last updated 10:56 PM
  • Follow Latest News

The Augusta Opera has canceled its remaining performances of the season and let production coordinator Kitty Reagan go. Augusta Opera board president Jonathan Krauss on Monday said the board hopes to release a statement concerning its future and the possibility of restructuring the organization later this week.

He compared the Augusta Opera’s current state with the Augusta Ballet in 2006, when the ballet chose not to renew contracts with its dancers and artistic staff. The Augusta Ballet currently presents a season featuring out-of-town companies, booking rather than producing.

The Augusta Opera was founded in 1967 and has traditionally staged four productions, including a holiday concert, each year. It staged Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street in September and its annual Augusta Opera at St. Paul’s holiday concert in December. A production of Tosca was planned for March and The Barber of Seville was slated for May.

According to the Augusta Opera Web site, the organization had an annual budget of $600,000.

Dr. Krauss said Managing Director Les Reagan was still with the opera, but he would be unavailable for comment. Phone calls to Mr. Reagan at the Augusta Opera offices were unreturned.

Charles Scavullo, executive director at the Imperial Theatre, confirmed that the opera’s dates in March and May had been scratched.

Comments (18) Add comment
ADVISORY: Users are solely responsible for opinions they post here and for following agreed-upon rules of civility. Posts and comments do not reflect the views of this site. Posts and comments are automatically checked for inappropriate language, but readers might find some comments offensive or inaccurate. If you believe a comment violates our rules, click the "Flag as offensive" link below the comment.
My_2nd
0
Points
My_2nd 02/02/09 - 04:14 pm
0
0
i didn't know augusta had an

i didn't know augusta had an opera.

jackfruitpaper833
41
Points
jackfruitpaper833 02/02/09 - 04:16 pm
0
0
Hmmmm I wonder why

Hmmmm I wonder why

Dixieman
14426
Points
Dixieman 02/02/09 - 04:26 pm
0
0
How much is "$600,00."? Nice

How much is "$600,00."? Nice proofreading, Chronicle.

ColdBeerBoiledPeanuts
7387
Points
ColdBeerBoiledPeanuts 02/02/09 - 04:29 pm
0
0
I can imagine that due to the

I can imagine that due to the economy, there are less corporate sponsors and private sponsors and donors to fund the remaining shows.

Little Lamb
45374
Points
Little Lamb 02/02/09 - 04:44 pm
0
0
What if they cancelled an

What if they cancelled an opera and nobody came?

FallingLeaves
27
Points
FallingLeaves 02/02/09 - 04:46 pm
0
0
This is quite a loss to the

This is quite a loss to the Arts community. My father sang with the Augusta Opera Chorus and it was a joy to him to perform in the Operas and Christmas at St. Paul's performances. He made many friends there and brought friends into the Opera Chorus to sing as well. That's been quite a few years ago, but those years enriched our family, because we went to the Opera to see him perform, whereas we might not have thought to if he hadn't been involved. My son enjoyed everything about the opera, and enjoyed sitting in on the rehearsals even more. He once told us that his favorite part of the performance was when the symphony was warming up. because it meant everything was about to start. I believe, being a guy (even though a little fella), and judging by the glee on his face, he really enjoyed the cacophony of the instruments tuning up. Some of my best memories of Augusta include the Opera. I hope the Opera is only down, not out.

Lipstick
0
Points
Lipstick 02/02/09 - 05:05 pm
0
0
I guess it's really over

I guess it's really over Augusta. The fat lady has sung.

jackfruitpaper833
41
Points
jackfruitpaper833 02/02/09 - 05:19 pm
0
0
Aren't they trying to give 50

Aren't they trying to give 50 Million of the stimulus towards the Arts Nationally? I wonder if it passes can we get it right away if we send them this story?

JohnQPublic
5
Points
JohnQPublic 02/02/09 - 05:24 pm
0
0
"The day the music

"The day the music died"....bye, bye Miss American Pie.

bone
23
Points
bone 02/02/09 - 06:00 pm
0
0
people that got off their fat

people that got off their fat [filtered word]es and came to the opera always enjoyed the performances. unfortunately, people have confused recorded sounds / videos watched on t.v. as just as good as a live performance. what a shame: live artistic performances enable a patron to draw from the energy of the performers and the reaction of the audience at the event to create a unique experience. but since this is the ipod/hdtv generation, i doubt anyone will care enough to check out the little bit of available performances left in this area.

CarlA
114
Points
CarlA 02/02/09 - 06:39 pm
0
0
Hey Augusta, Your town sux

Hey Augusta, Your town sux because nobody cares about supporting anything. All you do is complain when "there's nothing to do." Until the apathy is gone organizations will continue to perish.

APiratesLife4Me
0
Points
APiratesLife4Me 02/02/09 - 07:40 pm
0
0
Were there salaries/payroll

Were there salaries/payroll involved with the opera?

bone
23
Points
bone 02/02/09 - 07:42 pm
0
0
always payroll when it came

always payroll when it came to performances, but kitty & les were the only ones i'm pretty sure that were involved in any sort of capacity that would be salaried - and i'm sure the amount of compensation we're talking about is quite small.

BakersfieldCityLimits
1
Points
BakersfieldCityLimits 02/02/09 - 08:23 pm
0
0
Obama, a lonely nation turns

Obama, a lonely nation turns it's eyes to you. Please do not foresake us, in this, our time of need.

HillGuy
7
Points
HillGuy 02/02/09 - 10:32 pm
0
0
Wow... I think Augusta is

Wow... I think Augusta is definately going backwards. We've lost the Lynx, the ballet and now the opera. The problem in Augusta is that the ppl here will not support anything. They say they want more arts and entertainment options, but then don't support them. And the wealthy elite in Augusta tend to be veru stingy with their checkbooks in supporting these arts organisations... without patronage from the wealthy, the high arts cannot survive here.

HillGuy
7
Points
HillGuy 02/03/09 - 12:03 am
0
0
I disagree...philanthropy in

I disagree...philanthropy in Augusta is much less than other cities its size. Look at the Kroc center.. they are having a hard time getting started with that project even though they were given a huge endowment from the Kroc estate... the rpoblem is that they can't seem to get local philanthropists to step up with more support.

junket83
0
Points
junket83 02/03/09 - 12:43 am
0
0
The fact that Augusta

The fact that Augusta supported a ballet and opera organization for many years is amazing given our small size and lack of a major university.

Don't blame the local philanthropists and others during this economic downturn. Money is very tight right now and many non-profits, arts groups and even business will be hard pressed to survive in this economy.

The key will be for arts groups to continue building long term interests by limiting their scope until better times.

Back to Top

Top headlines

Commissioners seek attorney general's opinion on SPLOST

Two Augusta commissioners are seeking an opinion from Georgia Attorney General Sam Olens on the city's disbursement of sales tax proceeds to non-profits.
Search Augusta jobs