Economics and the mid-life crisis have much in common: Both dwell on foregone opportunities

C'est la vie; c'est la guerre; c'est la pomme de terre . . . . . . . . . . . . . email: jpalmer at uwo dot ca

. . . . . . . . . . .Richard Posner should be awarded the next Nobel Prize in Economics . . . . . . . . . . . .

Monday, December 05, 2005

What Is It About Capital-Labour Substitution that Aussies Don't Understand?

Tyler Cowen links to a story about restrictions at the Sydney Opera House.
Under a new interpretation of WorkCover rules, players in the Australian Opera and Ballet Orchestra can't be exposed to sound levels higher than 85 decibels averaged over a day.

This will have implications for orchestral music generally, but its immediate impact is being felt on, of all things, the Australian Ballet's Sleeping Beauty. To avoid any one musician being exposed to excessive sound, the orchestra is working with relay teams of extra musicians: four separate horn sections, four of clarinets, four of flutes, and so on. The orchestra that begins a particular performance isn't necessarily the same one that finishes it.

It's a logistical nightmare and an expensive one, adding $100,000 to the ballet's production costs.
Surely a less costly way of dealing with the situation is to provide the players with partial-sound-deadening earplugs. They are inexpensive and effective.

But as a horn player, I love to see the increase in demand for horn players. If it keeps up, I might even turn semi-pro...
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