I have to say that the individual raised some legitimate points worth considering.
Why is it that we think that if we do Madame Butterfly or Hamlet in a twenty-first century setting that it suddenly becomes more relevant to a new audience? The music, the pathos, the whatever-it-is that has made this work stand the test of time remains the same. Why would an audience of any age care whether the setting is traditional, or whether it's performed as though the surroundings on the stage are current? Does your potential audience even know this before they make the decision to attend, and what difference does it really make to them? Do we honestly think this is what it takes to get people into our opera houses and theaters?
If I've never been to an opera before and make the decision to attend, it's likely that I have some basic expectation of what's to come. If I dress up for a night at the opera (or even if I go in casual clothes), I'm likely going for the spectacle of it all, and might just walk away disappointed if it doesn't meet those expectations. I'm either going to like it or not, and whether it appears to be the year 2014 or 1714 isn't going to be the deciding factor.
Before we start tampering with the classics, might we not be well advised to actually seek out the point of view of the audience we're trying to reach? Perhaps our preconceived notions of what will appeal to them are incorrect, rooted in our own perspective but not connected with theirs. Opera, theater, and classical music all have intrinsic value. Why can't we reach new consumers by selling them on that which is timeless?