I have been interested in opera all my adult life, and have been attending performances with greater or lesser frequency depending on personal circumstances and location. This website grew out of a PhD in Musicology that I completed in 2018 at Royal Holloway University of London on the financial sustainability of opera and orchestral music. This combined my interest in opera with the focus of my previous working life, and led to my writing occasional articles covering the economics of opera - and eventually to the creation of this website.
After a degree combining Classics (Literae Humaniores) and Economics (PPE), I worked in UK local government and became a qualified public finance accountant (CIPFA). I moved to work for an international management consulting firm, and spent most of the rest of my working life carrying out projects in Europe, Africa, Australasia, and mainly in Asia during more than a quarter of a century consulting to public, private and non-profit organisations. I lived in half a dozen countries in East and Southeast Asia for nearly 25 years, travelling widely and working for two global consulting companies as well as owning and managing my own ASEAN-based consulting business. I was fortunate to gain experience in many sectors, in particular in utilities, energy and resource-based industries, in a wide range of areas including strategic and business planning, organisational development, management information, operational improvement, project appraisal, and financial management. I also taught at a business school in China, and worked for a development organisation in Vietnam aimed at eradicating rural poverty. I co-authored a book on management as well as editing two business books. I am a Trustee of The Opera Story (https://theoperastory.com).
Ever since operas were first performed more than 400 years ago, opera has defied commercial logic – but survived. Perhaps this lulls us, its fans, into the feeling that the future of opera is secure, come what may. I believe that insufficient attention is given to understanding what makes it tick as a business, and to considering how we may ensure its future when around us society, technology, business and economics are constantly changing. This website aims to be part of my very small contribution to its future.
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