Loyalty vs. Ticket Sales

One day after she was quoted in the New York Times saying that Metropolitan Opera director Peter Gelb was “phasing her out,” soprano Ruth Ann Swenson received a warm ovation from the Met crowd attending her performance in a Handel opera. “But if she looked at the back of the orchestra, Swenson might have seen a possible cause for the Met’s reduced commitment: several rows of mostly empty seats. She doesn’t have a big recording company advertising her heavily, and other sopranos are better box office.”