Opera in London Offers Free Tickets to Young People

Category: Lifestyle/Entertainment


Unlocking Word Meanings

Read the following words/expressions found in today’s article.

  1. initiative / ɪˈnɪʃətɪv / (n) – a plan made to resolve something

    The manager proposed an initiative to help the theater attract a bigger audience.

  2. accessible / əkˈsɛsəbəl / (adj) – can easily be reached

    The company made its shows more accessible by offering tickets at affordable prices.

  3. elsewhere / ˈɛlsˌweɚ / (adv) – another place

    It’s expensive to buy tickets for the front seats, but I don’t want to sit elsewhere.

  4. supervision / ˌsuːpɚˈvɪʒən / (n) – the act of watching over someone do something

    Children are not allowed inside the theater without adult supervision.

  5. entitle / ɪnˈtaɪtl̟ / (v) – to give someone the benefit or the right to something

    My grandfather is entitled to discounts for the elderly.


Read the text below.

The English National Opera (ENO) in London is giving free tickets to people under 18 years old.

Last December 2018, the ENO announced its new initiative to give the youth an opportunity to watch opera for free. Stuart Murphy, the company’s CEO, said that the initiative is based on the ENO’s core values, one of which is to make opera more accessible to everyone.

He added that by removing ticket costs, the company hopes to attract young viewers, regardless of how much they know about opera. According to Murphy, the initiative will benefit not only the ENO but also the art of opera.

Under the initiative, people aged 16 to 17 can get free tickets for Saturday night performances during the ENO’s spring season. The seats are limited to the balcony area, but viewers can get up to 80% discount on full price tickets should they prefer to be seated elsewhere.

Meanwhile, those below 16 will require adult supervision. The adult, who will be paying full price, can then bring up to four people under 16 for free.

The free tickets are also available for school groups. Ten students can watch the opera for free as long as they are accompanied by one teacher.

This is not the ENO’s first initiative to get the youth interested in opera. In 2006, the ENO launched the Access All Arias scheme entitling its members to discounted tickets and programs. Full-time students or students 16 to 29 years old can sign up as members. They are allowed to bring another student guest, who can purchase a ticket at the same discounted price.

Viewpoint Discussion

Enjoy a discussion with your tutor.

Discussion A

• Do you think the ENO’s new initiative will be successful in making young people interested in opera? Why or why not?
• Aside from giving discounted or free tickets, how else can the ENO make opera more accessible? Discuss.

Discussion B

• If you could implement a similar initiative in your country, what art form would it be for? Why?
• In your opinion, what are the benefits of making art more accessible? Explain.