Just three days after launching its very own $1 million self crowdfunding campaign, The San Diego Opera proudly announced that it has made about 30% of its goal. Backers from all over the world have donated a total of $304,565 with 21 days left to go.
The financially troubled opera company revealed earlier this month it was scheduled to shut down permanently after the company’s last production, Massenet’s “Don Quixot.” The company’s board of directors later voted to move the closing date to May 19th, which gave them more time to raise the money.
Immediately following General director Ian Campbell’s shutdown announcement, many of the music lovers in the San Diego community voiced their support for the company. Acting board present Carol Lazier stated, “The public support for San Diego Opera’s future has been overwhelming. People could not accept their beloved opera was disappearing and took to the streets to protest.
She then added, “We heard you. But now it is up to you. The new San Diego Opera will not only depend on large gifts, but the community’s engagement and support. Every gift is needed – large, small and in between. From an acorn we will grow a mighty tree.”
Along with growth come changes within the company. Miss Lazier noted on Friday Mr. Campbell and his ex-wife, Ann Spira Campbell, the company’s deputy general director, were placed on leave of absence. Executive director Keith Fisher was also named Chief Operating Office. He will manage the staff and resources of the company as they work through the financial difficulties.
Miss Lazier wrote in a statement, “I have known Keith for a number of years. I have the utmost faith in his ability to handle the current needs of the Company with urgency, clarity, and discretion. He leads an incredible staff facing its greatest challenge in the Opera’s 49-year history. The work will be difficult, we will be exhausted, but I believe that with this team we’ll emerge as a stronger, better opera for all of San Diego.”
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