Ziggy’s “My Fair Lady Effect”

Posted by savevca1 on April 18th, 2010

The Chair of the VCAM Review Ziggy Switkowski (also Chair of Opera Australia), whilst lamenting OA’s financial status for 2009 to The Age, looked longingly back to 2008 when the company posted a $837,785 surplus thanks to a musical! Mr Switkowski calls it the “My Fair Lady Effect”, with much of OA’s 2008 surplus due to the popularity of My Fair Lady performed in Melbourne in May (followed by a Sydney season).

The season of My Fair Lady starred many of Australia’s best music theatre talent including Nancye Hayes, Judi Connelli, Reg Livermore, Nick Christo, Glaston Toft and Matthew Robinson (pictured).

Read the full article from The Age here.

With Ziggy expected to hand down his VCAM Review findings any day now, we hope his experience at OA has prompted a light bulb moment and he will recommend VCA Music Theatre’s degree be fully restored.

And we dont even mind Ziggy’s coming late to the party. Besides the obvious fact Melbourne is Australia’s home of music theatre and hence one would think its premiere arts College should probably teach the art form, but Live Performance Australia’s Ticket Attendance and Revenue Survey 2008 Report put music theatre as the second highest arts revenue stream after “non classical music” such as pop concerts (see page 11 of the full LPA report).

Lets hope Ziggy recommends to SAVE VCA in all its glory – a College that until University of Melbourne got their grubby hands on it, taught all arts forms on a single campus. A qualification unique in Australia and indeed extremely rare globally.

What are you expecting Ziggy’s report will recommend? Do you sense a Uni Melb PR whitewash or will Ziggy hold his ground? Post your comments below.

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2 Responses to “Ziggy’s “My Fair Lady Effect””

  1. concerned musician

    Let’s hope Ziggy holds his ground!

  2. Negative feedback from commissioned surveys has never been a problem for Glyn Davis, it is simply locked away and forgotten (when possible), or otherwise ignored and the public blanketed with PR spin. As chair of the VCAM review, Ziggy has helped Glyn by removing the terrible publicity relating to the VCA and UoM from the front pages of the newspapers while still allowing Melbourne Model ‘reforms’ to continue, apparently unabated, at the VCA. Since Ziggy never once complained about this, one must assume the worst. But even if the review has some criticism, the findings will be treated by Glyn in the same way as the in principle agreement with the state government on how the VCA should be managed: like it never happened. Just who is Glyn responsible to? Certainly not to his buddies on the UoM Council, and the Brumby government will try to stay out of it, as they have with the fiasco at the Monash synchrotron. Who is left to stand up to these guys?

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