I just received a call from the National Ballet of Canada trying to pinch me for bucks. It’s their annual membership drive. Given the times for membership events, often in the afternoon, I think they should concentrate on pinching those who are retired or those who pull in millions cheating shareholders, the government, and those who slave for them! Give Lord Conrad Black a call in Chicago, assuming he is not in court, and pinch him for a few bucks!! Good luck.
They’ve almost doubled their ticket prices since the move to the new Four Seasons Centre for the Performing Arts and they want me to give too. I wouldn’t even have the time to actually attend any of their perks. Call someone who has a lot of idle time on their hands.
I find it all quite galling. For the 2005/2006 season the top season tickets went for $697.50, now they’ll set you back a cool $1,201: $194 short of doubling in price!! I’m seriously thinking of cancelling my subscription, upgrading my television viewing experience and sticking in a ballet DVD! Given all the human rights organizations and hospitals turning their pockets inside out begging for bucks, how can the ballet or any arts organization justify my support? We have some 6.7 billion humans on this blue sphere with approximately half defined as ‘poor.’ Canada is one of the richest nations with an embarrassing abundance of natural resources and yet 1 in 6 children live in poverty according to this website.
Should we live for art or should we live to simply exist?
Below are some interesting stats I pulled from Wilkipedia:
Even if poverty may be lessening for the world as a whole, it continues to be an enormous problem:
• One third of deaths - some 18 million people a year or 50,000 per day - are due to poverty-related causes. That's 270 million people since 1990, the majority women and children, roughly equal to the population of the US.
• Every year nearly 11 million children die before their fifth birthday.
• In 2001, 1.1 billion people had consumption levels below $1 a day and 2.7 billion lived on less than $2 a day
• 800 million people go to bed hungry every day.
I know this isn’t the forum to change the world so I’ll stop here. If you want to support the National, that’s wonderful. I’m having a difficult time reconciling the numbers. The gentlemen I spoke to told me they’ve had to hire many more dancers to accommodate the increased performances required at the Four Seasons. I decided to crunch the numbers. My 2005/2006 year book tallies up 62 dancers. The NBoC website tallies all of 67 dancers as of today. I did not include apprentices. So, they’ve hired 5 more dancers and for this prices have almost doubled from the Hummingbird Centre to the Four Seasons. Let’s say the average salary for those extra dancers is 47k, that’s an extra cash outlay of just 235k. I know they’ve had to increase performance dates and no doubt the rent at the Four Seasons is quite high but doubling prices is a bit much for me.