Royal Opera House to open in May

Published: 11 March 2021
Reporter: Vera Liber

Current Rising Credit: Johan Persson
Within The Golden Hour Credit: Tristram Kenton

The Royal Opera House will open to audiences on 17 May 2021 with performances from The Royal Ballet and The Royal Opera, new work online and an opera in 'hyper-reality'.

The Royal Ballet will present a programme of 21st century works, including Christopher Wheeldon’s Within the Golden Hour and two works new to the company by Crystal Pite, plus digital content including Meet the Young Dancers on 19 March, a streamed event introducing this season’s Aud Jebsen Young Dancers and the 2020/21 Prix de Lausanne Dancer. Draft Works, The Royal Ballet’s showcase of new ideas and creativity in dance, will première online in May.

The Royal Opera will present Mozart’s opera seria La clemenza di Tito in a new production directed by Richard Jones, conducted by Mark Wigglesworth and designed by Ultz.

On 9 April, The Royal Opera will live-stream its first fully staged production since the start of the pandemic: a new double bill of Bertolt Brecht’s and Kurt Weill’s The Seven Deadly Sins and Mahagonny Songspiel, directed by Isabelle Kettle and featuring soloists of the Jette Parker Young Artists Programme under the baton of British-Cypriot conductor Michael Papadopoulos with choreography from Julia Cheng.

The "world’s first opera in hyper-reality", Current, Rising, a collaboration between ROH’s innovation programme, Audience Labs, Figment Productions and Royal Holloway, University of London, is a 15-minute opera experience that combines virtual reality with a multisensory set, inviting audiences to step into an ‘Opera Tardis’ and "experience a dream-like journey carried musically by a poem layered in song."

Alex Beard, Chief Executive of the Royal Opera House, said, “it is incredibly exciting that we will soon be opening our doors and welcoming audiences back to our beautiful Covent Garden home. We can’t wait to bring life back to our stages and the joy of live performance back to our audiences, and I am delighted that we can go back to doing what we do best: performing the world’s best ballet and opera to audiences at home and around the globe.”