Fiorella doesn't know whether or not she and Husband are going to renew their Austin Lyric Opera season tickets next year. Now that they live out in the sticks, it's something of a pain to spend forty-five minutes driving into Austin, sometimes in heavy traffic, then another forty-five driving home through the rural darkness.
Besides, despite shelling out for the orchestra section every year, and lately sweetening the deal with a yearly $250 donation, Fio and Husband have not been happy with their seats ever since the ALO moved from Bass Hall to the Long Center. First they were stuck front row center, which gave them a riveting view of the sweat beads sparkling on the back of conductor Richard Buckley's head. After Fio complained in her own inimitable style, she and Husband were moved to more acceptable seats, although they would have preferred being a little closer to the stage. This season, Fio et spouse were moved further down front, but to one side, which they do not like.
Fiorella thinks that the basic problem is the Long Center itself. The front row of seats is too near the orchestra pit, and slant of the floor is wrong, not rising until about row six. Also, the rows are placed so close together that it is hard for audience members to pass each other to reach their seats, and six-foot tall Husband can't stretch out his legs during the performance. Besides, the chairs are too small-- and not cushiony enough for Fio's tender derriere.
Other amenities Fiorella and her spouse had grown accustomed to at ALO's former venue are missing, such as the large couches in the enclosed loggia. And where are those neato golf carts that transported people to and from?
Fio and Husband adored their old seats at Bass, fourth row center, and assumed they'd have comparable seats at Long, but such was not to be. Oh well, judging from the unusually large flocks of tuxedo-clad men a and black-gowned women in evidence at Cenerentola, red-dressed Fiorella and her money will not be missed if she disappears into the night.
Let them have their convention of crows. Fio will stay home, put on her comfy crimson robe and listen to the stereo.