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As NYC Opera Closes, Opera Theater of St. Louis Sees Growth

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ST. LOUIS (KMOX) - The final curtain fell on the New York City Opera over the weekend. The 70-year-old company is filing bankruptcy and ending operations but here in St. Louis the future looks more positive for the European art form.

Unlike the City Opera, which has been running a deficit since 2003, Opera Theatre of St. Louis has just wrapped up a fourth year exceeding fundraising goals, according to General Director Timothy O’Leary.

“Our endowment over the last five years has grown by something like 33 percent,” O’Leary said.

The theater reported this summer that its annual contributions have grown from $4.1 million to over $5 million in fiscal 2013 and the endowment is currently $25.3 million.

O’Leary worked at New York City Opera for six years and says he is in a state of shock and grief over its closing.

O’Leary credits a “gun ho” and “loyal” subscriber base and great Board of Directors with success at the Opera Theatre of St. Louis.

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