Today (Tuesday 27 June) Arts Council England (ACE) has confirmed that English National Opera (ENO) has re-entered ACE’s National Portfolio at its current funding level of £12.38million.
Dr Harry Brunjes, Chairman of ENO, commented: ‘ENO is very pleased to share that we have been readmitted to Arts Council England’s National Portfolio. This decision reflects the hard work and sacrifice made by every single person across the organisation, including the senior team, led by Cressida Pollock. Their commitment has allowed us to build a sustainable business model, and one that I am confident will allow ENO to grow and prosper. A thriving, busy, competitive opera scene in the UK is vital if opera is going to continue to develop and flourish. We are pleased that Arts Council England have recognised that ENO delivers public value not only through the productions that it puts on stage, but also through its education work, talent development, and artistic partnerships with other organisations and venues. With a full artistic and executive team in place and many years of fantastic opera ahead of us, I am very confident and excited about the future.’
Cressida Pollock, ENO’s Chief Executive, said: ‘We are delighted to have been readmitted into ACE’s National Portfolio. This follows the huge amount of work that has gone into stabilising ENO and developing a sustainable platform from which we are able to grow. Only three years ago we were facing a very real risk of closure and it is hugely significant to see the work of the whole company celebrated through this show of confidence from ACE. We employ over 350 people on stage and offstage, including our award-winning Chorus, Orchestra and technical teams. We appreciate the huge importance of our teams working and performing together regularly, with the security offered by a permanent position and this will ensure that we will remain the world leader in the development of British operatic talent. We will invest more resource into ENO Baylis, our learning and participation programme, which enables people of all ages and backgrounds to engage with opera. We will keep our ticket prices affordable, with more than 500 tickets available for every single ENO performance for £20 or less alongside free tickets to dress rehearsals for young people and community groups. By the 19/20 season we will have grown the number of London Coliseum operas we perform by 25% from the 2016/17 level - from 8 to 10. This is just one part of our wider mission, which is to deliver more opera of the very highest quality to as wide an audience as possible.’
Daniel Kramer, ENO‘s Artistic Director, said: ‘This wonderful news is a tribute to the hard work of our Company over the past two years. It is thanks to the dedication and commitment of every single one of my colleagues that we have been able to secure our future. We will now be able to develop more diverse and inclusive work, to support more British talent, to continue to work with the world’s most exciting artists, and to expand the definition and reach of opera to audiences across our nation.’