Abu Dhabi, UAEWednesday 5 August 2020

London's Royal Opera House to hold first live concert since closure due to pandemic

The venue has been closed since March 17

The stage at London's Royal Opera House is set to host its first performance in almost three months. Unsplash 
The stage at London's Royal Opera House is set to host its first performance in almost three months. Unsplash 

London's Royal Opera House is reopening its doors to the public – but only virtually, for now.

Covent Garden's premier performing arts venue will welcome a live concert on Saturday, June 13, almost three months since it was forced to close amid the coronavirus pandemic.

The concert, which will be held without a live audience, will include performances from British soprano Louise Alder, British tenor Toby Spence and Canadian baritone Gerald Finley, and a world premiere of new work by Royal Ballet choreographer Wayne McGregor. It will be hosted by the venue's director of music Antonio Pappano.

The Royal Opera House has been closed during the coronavirus pandemic. Alamy
The Royal Opera House has been closed during the coronavirus pandemic. Alamy

The concert will be live-streamed direct from the stage on the Royal Opera House's YouTube and Facebook pages, and broadcast on BBC Radio 3 at 7.30pm UK time (10.30pm UAE time). It will be free to stream.

Two further concerts (on June 20 and 27) will be available to view live and on demand for £4.99 (Dh23). BBC Television will then broadcast highlights from all three concerts.

The Royal Opera House has been closed since March 17, the day the British government banned gatherings to stop the spread of coronavirus.

Since then, as with many other cultural institutions across the world, the venue has struggled to make ends meet.

Chief executive Alex Beard recently told the BBC the venue's income had dropped by 60 per cent.

"With no box office income and limited reserves we, like theatres and performing arts organisations across the country, face unprecedented financial stress," he said.

Updated: June 6, 2020 12:42 PM

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