Media Medium
21 December 2000


Will Hall become opera's sacrificial lamb?

Tony Hall may be ready for a change of career, but what can he be thinking
of by taking up the poisoned chalice of the Royal Opera House?

After eight years as head of BBC news, Tony Hall is rumoured to be on the short list for the job of executive director of the Royal Opera House. With three changes of ROH director in as many years, Hall will need to be motivated by something more than his love of opera if he is to take on what some see as the art world's poisoned chalice. What can he be thinking of?

Like all Pisceans (March 3 1951), Tony Hall can easily soak up the mood of his surroundings, and as Birt's right-hand man he mirrored the master. His dutiful, time-serving and bureaucratic Capricorn Moon seems to have squashed his more theatrical and imaginative Piscean talents, and his unsuccessful bid to become BBC director-general has left him with nowhere further to go.

But Hall's horoscope shows an impressive, benevolent Jupiter and if there's one thing Pisceans love, it's the feeling that by making sacrifices, they can redeem a lost cause. Last April, Hall's Jupiter moved into fiery Aries, putting fire in his belly and a desire to blaze a new trail, so a career change looks imminent.

The ROH, with its troubled history, is an ideal candidate for redemption. Its modern incorporation (April 1 1950) makes it a fiery Aries and its warlike tendency has repeatedly manifested in internal strife. But it is also saddled with a tedious Moon- Saturn conjunction in Virgo, bogging it down in red tape, criticism and the constraints inherent in public funding. This same Moon-Saturn factor dominates the horoscope of the BBC, and Hall could find he has been through this dull managerial movie before. The job has been split into two and Hall would get administrative, not artistic, control. So despite the inspiring Aries connections, Hall's Pisces opposite the RHO's Virgo Moon- Saturn suggest that much of the joy and creativity will be knocked out of the job.

There is not enough between the two horoscopes to make this a glorious career climax. If Hall does persist, he needs to accept the constraints and not imagine that he can quickly tame this unruly beast, or else the Opera House Ram is sure to consume him.

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