Rating City Opera's Plan For Survival

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Calling it a "bold plan to deliver world-class productions within reach of more New Yorkers," the financially-strapped New York City Opera announced its 2011-12 season on Tuesday at the Guggenheim Museum, in which it will move out of its longtime Lincoln Center home, the David H. Koch Theater, and perform five operas in venues around the city. 

Preceding that announcement, union members gathered outside in the broiling July heat to stage a lively demonstration against the move, and against the cuts that will result. City Opera says the move is the only way to remain viable; critics contend that it has not made necessary adjustments or taken appropriate steps to keep the company at Lincoln Center.

To offer some perspective, host Naomi Lewin is joined by three guests: Catherine Malfitano, a soprano, stage director and teacher who began her career at City Opera; James Jorden, editor of the opera blog Parterre Box and a columnist for The New York Post; and Ken Benson, an artist manager and vocal consultant formerly with Columbia Artists Management.

Programming note: George Steel, City Opera's general manager and artistic director, will join us at WQXR later this week.

Podcast producer: Brian Wise; Engineer: Bill Bowen