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  • Marika Page

English Touring Opera to Relocate to Sheffield

Sheffield's arts scene will be getting some new neighbours by the end of 2024! English Touring Opera (ETO) will make Sheffield its new permanent home by the end of October as part of the Arts Council England Transfer Programme.

Sheffield is made up of a vibrant cultural population, with nearly 7.5% working in the creative sector which makes this move a perfect fit. ETO has already established connections in Sheffield through their regular performances at Sheffield Theatres' Lyceum and collaborations with the Sheffield Music Hub and local schools. This relocation will enable them to strengthen ties with Sheffield Theatres and collaborate with new partners, which will broaden their outreach and introduce new audiences to opera.

The Rake's Progress, which toured to Sheffield's Lyceum this March alongside Manon Lescaut.

Exciting partnerships involving both Sheffield Hallam University and University of Sheffield are on the horizon too. Initially, ETO will move to a temporary office by October 2024, fostering deeper community relationships before establishing a permanent home in 2025. Due to their long-term planning cycle, ETO will continue to rehearse and premiere its tours at London’s Hackney Empire in 2025, with the goal of beginning rehearsals and premieres in Sheffield from the Spring 2026 season.

Since 1979, English Touring Opera has brought live productions and impactful educational and community projects to more towns and cities across the UK than any other opera company. Their core mission is to make exceptional artistic experiences available and accessible to everyone. Each year, the ETO reaches 40,000 people through full theatre-based productions, specially commissioned operas for infants, children, families, and young people with special educational needs, creative workshops for individuals living with dementia and their carers, opera-making workshops in secondary schools, and songwriting workshops in Alternative Provision settings designed to support young people’s mental health. It will truly be a wonderful addition to Sheffield, and we can’t wait to welcome to our beloved city to continue their amazing work.

ETO’s current show is a new production of Dame Judith Weir’s Blond Eckbert, a co-production with Britten Pears Arts, which opened the 75th Aldeburgh Festival on Friday 7 June and will tour in the autumn alongside a new production of Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov’s The Snowmaiden.


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