The Sydney Opera House has responded to U.S. actor John Malkovich’s criticism. The “Academy Award-nominated star has been quoted to say that the Australian landmark is fit only for a circus.
In an interview with the Daily Telegraph, Malkovich has not-so-kind words in describing the Opera House, wherein his “The GIacomo Variations” production was held in 2011.
“It’s lovely to drive by on a motorboat and it has a very nice crew and very capable, but the acoustics are hideous,” the 60-year-old actor said.
Comparing Sydney Opera House to some 200 venues that he had played in the past, Malkovich said that “it certainly has acoustics that would do an aeroplane hangar disservice.”
He added, “For a catholicity of reasons, it’s not the wisest place to put on anything … with the possible exception of maybe a circus.”
Malkovich also complained about the size the Concert Hall stage, which he called “continent sized,” and the 2500-seat auditorium.
“You couldn’t even throw a vegetable – which I am sure people would have loved to do – and have any hope of it ever reaching the stage. If I can’t be hit by a tomato, that tells me the stage is too big.”
The Opera House is defending itself against such harsh words, opting to be diplomatic about the criticisms.
A statement was released on Friday, in which the Opera House is described as “Australia’s premier arts venue.”
“Mr Malkovich is a fine actor and is entitled to his opinion,” a statement from the Opera House reads, as obtained by the Australian Associated Press.
“We are pleased at his acknowledgment of the beauty of the building and high quality of Opera House staff.”
It added that the NSW Government allotted $13.7 million in funds for “key renewal projects,” which have begun to “ensure we meet the expectations of 21st century artists and audiences.”
Malkovich was aware that “The Giacomo Variations” was a critical failure when it came out in 2011.
“We weren’t in shape to be good, either, in all truthfulness. The piece just wasn’t ready,” he continued to the Daily Telegraph. “So to a great extent the fault was in ourselves and to a great extent in the venue because more or less the same piece had a great deal more success in other places.”