We don’t want to bring down the curtain on ENO, but opera has to change Darren Henley

Funding shake-ups have come as a shock, but offer the art form an opportunity to find a new direction and new audiences

Koanga by Pegasus Opera Company

A performance of Koanga by the Brixton-based Pegasus Opera Company at Sadler’s Wells, London. Photograph: Tristram Kenton

Arts Council England recently declined to offer English National Opera (ENO) a place in its next national portfolio of funded organisations. Instead, we proposed a package for it to relocate and reimagine itself outside London. We have been accused lately of crimes including vandalism and metrophobia, by everyone from Andrew Marr to Melvyn Bragg, David Pountney and Simon Schama (although Londoners may note that London’s arts institutions will continue to receive £152m a year – a third of Arts Council funding). Contrary to many reports, we have not sounded a death knell for the opera company.

We know that alongside its acclaimed repertoire of operas, ENO also has a great education programme connecting primary and secondary schoolchildren with opera, and it has created innovative programmes such as ENO Breathe, a wellbeing initiative for people recovering from the effects of Covid-19. We want to support a bright, if different, future for ENO and help develop opera as an art form.

Check Also

‘I saw lightning between their fingers’: DJs on the magic of unusual dancefloors

Post Views: 0 ‘I saw lightning between their fingers’: DJs on the magic of unusual …

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *