NEW YORK (WPIX) -- Forget about hearing the fat lady or anyone for that matter sing at the Met. The Metropolitan Opera is being forced to cut costs in the coming season to stay afloat.
"The economic crisis has had an effect on all cultural institutions, and the Met is no exception," Met's general manager, Peter Gelb, told the Times. "It's affected our endowment, it's affected our cash flow, it's affected our revenue streams. What we don't want is for it to affect our artistic productivity."
According to Gleb, the Met's $300 million endowment has dropped to an unusable quantity, and donations are down by as much as $10 million this season.
In order to cut costs, members of the senior staff at the opera house are taking a 10% pay cut, while other staff members are expected to do the same by the end of this season.
Anonymous reports told the Times that the Met's deficit could reach as much as $40 million. This year's budget is $291 million.
Gleb believes many are just looking for cheaper nights out, and a $375 ticket for the opera in the current economic climate is out of the question. Ticket sales are expected to be down by several million dollars from what was expected this year.