Utah Opera star Glade Peterson sang for his supper Monday - and may have earned himself and other promoters of Utah arts an extra slice of dessert.
Peterson and other arts officials appealed to the Public Education Appropriations Committee for a repeat of funding at least at this year's level for arts performances in Utah's schools. Peterson entertained with two samples of the Utah Opera Company's caliber - "Without a Song" (appropriately enough), and, by request, "Danny Boy."The committee went a step beyond giving the nod to the basic appropriation requests, approving a $43,800 building block that could be added to the total if state revenues support any additional money.
The Utah Symphony, Ballet West, Utah Opera Company and Hansen Planetarium provide hundreds of hours of exposure for Utah students to the arts and sciences. They, in fact, subsidize the school program to the extent of 30 percent of the total, legislators were told.
The committee gave tentative approval for $433,000 for the symphony; $169,000 for Ballet West; $66,400 for the opera company; and $151,100 for the planetarium.
Rep. Grant Protzman, D-North Ogden, who proposed the building block, said Utah has placed great value on the arts since pioneer times and should make public education students acquainted with the arts early in their lives.