Opera is for everyone. On this page we outline our beliefs, past successes, and future goals around Diversity and Inclusion.
We commit to creating opera for all people, and working with all people to create opera. We believe it is essential to nurture new and diverse talent, onstage and off. We want our theatre to be an accessible and welcoming space. We acknowledge those for whom a traditional theatre is inaccessible and aim to share opera with them in other ways, according to their needs. We know we will not always succeed in these aims, but we pledge to listen, learn and improve.
Our past successes
- In 2012 we created a Young Artists Scheme to develop, nurture and showcase emerging talent. It is important to give emerging talent a platform as they seek to break into a competitive industry.
- Since 2014 we have scheduled audio-described performances with a Touch Tour during our annual summer Season, to improve access to opera for blind and visually impaired people.
- In 2015 we held the first Relaxed opera performance in London. Relaxed Performances offer a warm welcome to people who find it difficult to follow the usual conventions of theatre behaviour. This can include, but is not limited to, people with learning disabilities, movement disorders, autistic spectrum disorder, other neurological conditions, and those with young children or babies. We are committed to scheduling at least one Relaxed Performance during each summer season.
- In 2018 our Inspire education and outreach programme was recognised with an International Opera Award. Formally launched in 2010, the Inspire programme aims to break down barriers to opera through work within the community.
- For many years, we have been reaching new audiences through free and discounted ticket schemes. We currently offer Free Tickets for Under 18s, Free Tickets for Over 65s, half price tickets for key workers and reduced-price INSPIRE tickets for those who wouldn’t otherwise be able to attend our performances. Our Free Tickets for Under 18s scheme reaches our most diverse audience group, with 44% of tickets in 2019 going to young people from Black, Asian and ethnically diverse backgrounds.
- In 2018 we became an accredited Dementia Friendly Theatre. Each year our staff are trained as Dementia Friends.
In September 2020 we took part in Music Masters’ I’M IN Diversity and Inclusion programme. This required us to provide an honest assessment of Diversity and Inclusion at Opera Holland Park. We are in the process of creating tangible and achievable goals to reflect the findings from this process. These will be published on this page in December 2020, once they have been agreed with the whole Opera Holland Park team.