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11 June 2020, 12:55 | Updated: 11 June 2020, 13:03
After being forced to postpone or cancel its shows during the coronavirus lockdown, opera and ballet returns to the Royal Opera House this weekend with exclusive virtual offerings.
The Royal Opera House has announced that it will be streaming its first series of live performances, since closing its doors on 17 March due to the COVID-19 outbreak.
Although the prestigious Covent Garden venue is no longer open to the public (and temporarily, we hope), it will be sharing a virtual concert this weekend to lift people’s spirits during lockdown.
In the caption for the concert’s trailer (watch above), the venue said: “We are bringing you three very special performances streamed live from the Royal Opera House as part of our #OurHouseToYourHouse series.
“Live from Covent Garden will celebrate ballet and opera in programmes of dance and music, curated by artistic directors of the Royal Opera House: Antonio Pappano, Music Director of The Royal Opera, Oliver Mears, Director of Opera, and Kevin O’Hare, Director of The Royal Ballet.”
Highlights will include an intimate ballet choreographed by Wayne McGregor, Royal Ballet’s Resident Choreographer, and performances from stars such as British soprano, Louise Alder, lyric tenor, Toby Spence, and Canadian bass-baritone, Gerald Finley, who will be bringing at-home audiences music from the likes of Handel, Butterworth and Britten.
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The classical concert series will be streamed via the Royal Opera House’s website and YouTube channel.
The first performance will be available to watch this weekend on 13 June at 7:30pm BST and 2:30pm ET, with further dates and recitals to follow.
Although the stream will be free, audiences are encouraged to donate wherever they can to help support the Royal Opera House’s community during the coronavirus pandemic.
As generating revenue from tickets is no longer possible, the arts venue has lost £3 for every £5 of its income, affecting hundreds of its artists. So far, a total of over £22,000 has been raised.
Along with this weekend’s live music, the arts venue has been streaming several other performances during lockdown via its digital platforms.
As part of the #OurHouseToYourHouse initiative, audiences have been able to enjoy Puccini’s operatic triptych, Il trittico, and ballet The Cellist, inspired by the momentous life of English cellist, Jacqueline du Pré.
The online premiere of The Royal Ballet’s La Fille mal gardée (‘The Wayward Daughter’) will also go live on YouTube tomorrow evening (12 June) at 7pm BST.
Based on a 1789 French ballet originally created by Jean Dauberval, this joyous and colourful production from Frederick Ashton features dancers Marianela Nuñez and Carlos Acosta, and tells the love story of Lise, the daughter of widow Simone, and Colas, and young farmer Colas.
Watch Royal Opera House’s first livestream via YouTube this Saturday 13 June at 7:30pm BST and 2:30pm ET.