A short post tonight. I found this a quite remarkable story. I quote:
A planned production of Bizet’s Carmen at the State Opera of West Australia has been pulled by the management because it conflicts with a two-year $400,000 partnership with the State Government health promotion agency, Healthway. Carmen is set around a cigarette factory.
Carolyn Chard, West Australian Opera general manager said the decision was “not difficult”.
She added: ‘“We care about the health and wellbeing of our staff, stage performers and all the opera lovers throughout WA, which means promoting health messages and not portraying any activities that could be seen to promote unhealthy behaviour.”
Well, dear me. Assuming the reporting is correct, where do we go from here? The word bowdlerise named after Thomas Bowdler was coined to describe this attitude. To stay within recent themes, it’s really very public service speak. Ms Chard must fit in well in that modern Government environment where cant substitutes for thought.
This is some of the other media coverage on this matter:
- 8 October Yahoo!7 News Carmen loses out to smokes deal
- 8 October 720 ABC Perth WA Opera butts out Carmen over smoking themes after securing Healthway sponsorship
- 9 October Sydney Morning Herald Chainsmoking Carmen culled by Western Australian Opera to protect sponsorship deal
- 9 October PM ABC WA Opera says sponsor didn't censor 'Carmen'
- 9 October 720 ABC Perth Colin Barnett embarrassed over scrapping of WA Opera's Carmen production due to Healthway sponsorship
The story has gone global. As one example, this is from Bloomberg - Australian opera company bans 'Carmen' for smoking