The Creative Europe Programme of the European Union has shown its faith in Opera Europa’s dedicated group of partners by offering renewed support which will enable us to develop and expand the digital project launched over two years ago into something altogether more wide-reaching during the years ahead. 

The successful bid is a tribute to the perseverance of existing partners, the courage of new partners, and to the industry of our small dedicated team. It is also a challenge. The task is to build on what we have learned during the past three years and to create a resource which truly presents a European Opera Season with the capacity to reach the world.

The Opera Platform can become the voice of opera. It exists to share the richness of operatic heritage and creation with a wider and more diverse public. It has the power to advocate all aspects of our art for the education and entertainment of millions.

A central element of our application was the celebration of the designated Year of European Cultural Heritage 2018.

We are now beginning to devise a core programme of 30full-length operas with our theatre partners which will present the range of that heritage in a lively and attractive way. That will be supplemented by carefully selected material from other sources.

But that is just a beginning. Equally important is the opportunity to commission and edit shorter-form material which will introduce and explain opera to new audiences. We are committed to working with partners in the educational field to create content which can be used in schools and academies, or simply by inquisitive people with iPhones.

Digital technology opens up creative possibilities to composers and directors to develop opera in unexpected ways. That by no means diminishes the value of our heritage, but it supplements it and opens other doors.

We shall be forming alliances with museums and spoken theatre as well as educationalists. We plan an autumn launch which will place opera within an historical and topical context.

We have chosen to take an independent route for the next stage of The Opera Platform project, because we believe that is the best way to empower our member theatres and to equip them for a sustainable future. We are in the process of forging strategic alliances with several distributors, rather than a single media partner, in order to extend the platform’s reach.