The Media, Entertainment & Arts Alliance has accused Opera Australia of “acting unconscionably” in a statement released today that claims the organisation is axing a quarter of its workforce, which the union has described as “a disgrace”. Opera Australia, however, has responded that it is “disappointed” by the MEAA’s public comments, claiming they include inaccuracies. Opera Australia flagged imminent redundancieslast month as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, as well as the sale of its Alexandria warehouse.

Attilla Opera Australia’s production of  Attila.  Photo © Prudence Upton

“This is a terrible decision by Opera Australia’s management and its board,” said Paul Davies, the director of MEAA’s Musicians section, who called on Arts Minister Paul Fletcher to intervene to save jobs by supporting the company.

Davies said in the statement that it was understood that the cuts “would be made to every department of the company, including musicians, chorus performers and technical and staging crew”.

“These workers have been loyal employees of OA for many years and have already taken a temporary pay cut to help the company through...