The Fate of the Critic in the Clickbait Age - The New Yorker
Last year, Timothy Mangan, who had been at the Orange County Register
for eighteen years, was let go with two weeks’ severance. It’s like
being in an exceedingly dull, slow version of Agatha Christie’s “And
Then There Were None.” You could
argue that classical critics are an endangered species because the art
form has lost its place in mainstream culture. Indeed, we no longer live
in a world where the conductor Sarah Caldwell could make the cover of Time.
Yet critic-free cities still have well-attended opera houses and
orchestras, which loom large in local cultural economies. Last season,
in Dallas, I witnessed a sold-out house for the première of Jake
Heggie’s opera “Great Scott.” Not long before that, in Houston, Wagner’s
“Die Walküre” drew a capacity crowd.