The opera is now 7,000,000 CZK ($370,000) in debt, while the reconstruction is about to cost tens of millions of Crowns. The length of the reconstruction hasn't been revealed by the Ministry. Even before there were concerns about the State Opera - it has been always losing the competition with the National Theatre. It has been suggested that it should merge with the National Theatre, so that there would be cooperation rather than the counter-productive competition. Some people argued that three opera stages are too many for Prague. As the plans of reconstruction emerged, many fear for the fate of the opera itself, including Mr. Dohnányi:
I'm not going to assist in the liquidation of the opera ensemble
Today at 11 o'clock, I resigned from the position of the General Director of the State Opera. It happened after a long pressure from the Ministry of Culture. At today's audience Culture Minister Jiří Besser informed me for the first time about the plan of the Ministry to have the Prague State Opera Prague comprehensively reconstructed, therefore to discontinue the art business - that in his opinion the post of the Director should not be occupied by an artist, but a manager. If I refused to resign, the Minister I was going to withdraw me on the spot. Minister didn't present me with another reason for the appeal he said that the State Opera has long been in a state of emergency, technically and economically, of which I do not bear the slightest guilt.
I regret that the Minister hadn't informed me of his intention earlier, while I was responsible for developing the project savings in 2011 and specifying the medium-term development concept of the State Opera. I presented to him both the documents. At the meeting on November 22 the Culture Minister also announced that he intends to list as director of the State Opera tender, in accordance with the declared intent to tender for any directors of governmental organizations, who in his opinion haven't passed the selection procedure. At the same time he invited me to take part in the selection process.
I regret that I could not implement the plans that I declared, but I am not going to assist in the liquidation of the Prague State Opera.
Thank you for your cooperation to all who joined me in striving to restore the importance and prestige of the opera house.
(translation by frufruJ)