There are some interesting tidbits scattered through the latest edition of the COC’s house magazine Prelude. They include a return to a six production season from 2014/15 (the last few years there have been seven). This is intended to free up cash to make the remaining productions more ambitious (as well as stem what was shaping up as an increasingly dodgy financial position). There is talk of “more grand opera” and “a great amount of Wagner on the COC’s horizon”. It’s also very clear that the current model of “challenging” productions (including Tcherniakov’s Don Giovanni) and encouraging established stars to make role debuts in Toronto will continue.
All of this makes sense to me from a business and an artistic viewpoint. Going more populist in search of a probably non-existent fringe audience seems to me wishful thinking at best. Giving the core audience a high quality product, aimed at those with real interest in the form, mixed with fiscal prudence just feels like the right way to go.