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Strikes silence Italy's operas

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A New York Times article this week detailed how a series of labor strikes have temporarily silenced Italy's main opera houses, including Milan's Teatro all Scala.

According to Times reporter Daniel J. Wakin, Italy's main opera houses are largely dependent on government financing and often suffer strikes or the threat of them. These latest strikes are in response to an emergency decree signed by Italian president Giorgio Napolitano that now must be weighed by Parliament. The decree imposes new regulations on operas and symphonies. Unions have said it would cut salaries for orchestra players, stagehands and chorus members; limit outside work; and reduce the number of temporary workers, according to the article.

On Tuesday night, the strike caused Teatro Alla Scala in Milan to cancel a performance of Verdi's "Simon Boccanegra," featuring Plácido Domingo in the title role.

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