Metropolitan Opera to Ban Heckler from Future Performances

By Francisco Salazar
(Credit: Marty Sohl / Met Opera)

The Metropolitan Opera has announced it will ban a heckler from future Met performances after his outburst during the March 17 performance of “Ariadne auf Naxos.”

The company told the New York Observer, “Although opera singers are vocal athletes, they should not be subjected to the kind of heckling that sports spectators get away with in stadiums. Thankfully, this was an isolated incident. Most opera-goers are opera lovers who respect the extraordinary ability and talent of our artists. The Met is attempting to identify the rogue audience member, who quickly exited the theater after his outburst, since he will not be allowed to attend future performances.”

The news comes after an audience member yelled, “You have no technique” at soprano Brenda Rae when she concluded her aria “Großmächtige Prinzessin.”

Many of Rae’s colleagues reacted with Sean Michael Plumb, who sang Harlekin, stating via social media that, “If you’re attending an opera and feel the need to shout out your selfish opinion in a moment of silence, please remember the other 3,799 people there bought tickets to hear the people on stage, not you.”

Rae’s publicist Verismo Communication said, “This is your semi-annual reminder that artists are people too, and they see the posts they are tagged in. If, for example, you comment “I hope she doesn’t know this hurtful thing” on an otherwise lovely tweet that tagged an artist, that artist will indeed now know the thing. Most artists do not want to be tagged when you are sharing reviews, no matter how complimentary. If it pains you to think they’d miss out, know that many artists pay lovely people like me to read those reviews for them, and I quite like my job. Lastly, please know that reaching a certain level of fame or prestige does not automatically equip an artist with an indestructibly thick skin. They do not hand out a Valkyrie shield with each Met ID.”