English National Opera Soloists Protest Art Council England’s Funding Decision

By Francisco Salazar

Following the final performance of “Tosca” on Nov. 4 at the English National Opera, soloists protested the Art Council England’s decision to cut its funding.

The soloists took to their bows all wearing “Choose Opera” t-shirts.

The symbolic bow came a few hours after the Arts Council said it would not give the ENO its annual fund of £12.6 million. Instead, the fund said the ENO would receive £17m over three years to “develop a new business model” and suggested it move to Manchester.

The news has received backlash and many opera singers have spoken out including Brian Jagde, Alice Coote, Ben Glassberg, Joseph Calleja, Deborah Warner, Susan Bullock, and Zachary James, among others.

The English National Opera for its part said, “The ENO has vision and purpose and we aim to support the leveling up agenda by reimagining opera for future generations across England.”