Project information

EUGENE ONEGIN Learning & Participation Programme

Our production of EUGENE ONEGIN tours in spring 2018. We want to inspire a new generation of opera makers & audiences by delivering free workshops on it in schools throughout the UK. The new chamber version is set in the 1960s, a world on the cusp of the women’s liberation movement.

March 2018 - September 2018

Charity information: OperaUpClose

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  • Need


    Opera is still seen as an elitist art-form to many but there is a place for people of all genders, ethnicities, backgrounds and economic means among our audiences, performers and behind the scenes at our productions.

    We want young people from a range of backgrounds to increase their confidence and understanding of the art-form and let them know that opera - storytelling with beautiful music - is for them. They are not excluded. They are the future.


    We encourage people unfamiliar with opera to try it by strategically breaking down barriers preventing them from doing so. We want to diversify the audience and makers of opera, which in turn will result in the most exciting, resilient and relevant art-form for the future.

    By going into schools and engaging directly with young people about the story and themes explored in the opera (free at point of access) we are introducing new skill-sets and providing joy and provocation to hundreds.

  • Aims

    Aim 1

    To increase the amount of people under the age of 18 who are engaged with EUGENE ONEGIN on tour.


    » 10 workshops will be provided (free at point of access) to 10 schools across the UK.
    » All students who attend a workshop will receive a free ticket to the production.

    What success will look like

    Success will be achieved if 200 under 18s over see the production on tour and feedback that they thought the production was either Excellent or Good (via feedback forms).

    Aim 2

    To inspire 200 young people and encourage at least 10% that a career in opera is an achievable goal.


    » The workshops will be delivered by the singers within our production who will be role-models. They will talk about their own routes into the industry.

    What success will look like

    Achieved if at least 20 young ppl ask our facilitators about the next steps they need to take in order to carve a career in opera, and 200 ppl rate production Excellent or Good.

    Aim 3

    To build solid relationships with schools across the UK so that programme has legacy and we return.


    » Involve schools in the planning of the workshops giving responsibility to young people to ensure we meet their needs.

    What success will look like

    Success will be achieved if at least ten schools feel that they are actively involved the planning process and we get invited back to offer more workshops on future productions.

  • Impact


    The project will reverse the decline in young people engaging with opera & provide an
    inspiring and creative opportunity for children & young people to participate.

    We will demonstrate the success of this project by monitoring the number of young ppl who will state their intention to see another opera within a year. Success will be 50% wish to see another opera (by us or another company) within 12 months of engaging with us. We will monitor if they do via student & teacher feedback.


    One risk is that schools do not book our workshops. This has been mitigated by us employing a designated Learning & Participation Director who will be tasked with pursuing various leads and engaging in genuine dialogue with the teachers and listening to their needs. The workshops will be designed in conjunction with what schools and pupils want.

    Another is that the facilitators don't deliver an engaging enough workshop. This is mitigated by us providing comprehensive training for all singers.


    Donors to this project will receive a monthly email report once we're on tour detailing which schools we've been to, where we are heading to next & how many young people have been engaged with the project. Feedback and any necessary changes that have been made to the project plans will be included.

  • Budget

    Budget - Project Cost: £6,974

    Loading graph....
      Amount Heading Description
      £900 Workshop training costs 1 full day x 6 facilitators @ £150/day
      £2,000 Workshop delivery costs 2 facilitators delivering 10 workshops at £100 each/session
      £2,000 Free tickets to participants 200 people x £10 concession price
      £1,442 L & P Dir fee 15 working days on project based on Pro-rata salary of £25,000/year
      £300 Overheads Contribution to phone bills & office rent plus printing of education packs
      £332 Contingency 5% of total project costs
  • Background


    Workshops will be run in schools in the following places (where we are touring our production to):

    London (North Finchley)
    St Andrews (Scotland)

    Due to the wide range of locations targeted, there is a range of socio-economic, demographic & historical information in each place. However, what unites them is that they all have a very low level of engagement with opera amongst young people thus far. We want to change this.


    The 200+ under 18s who will participate in the workshops and attend productions of EUGENE ONEGIN for free will be the prime beneficiaries.

    Their teachers + parents will also benefit from more engaged, inspired young people.

  • Why Us?

    Why Us?

    Our testimonials speak for themselves:

    John Ellerman Foundation:

    "As a funder, we are mostly interested in supporting arts organisations that bring the performing arts to people who would not otherwise attend. OperaUpClose is doing exactly that. Seeking out, developing & nurturing relationships with new audiences."

    Previous participant:

    "The workshop was amazing. It was great to learn about the setup and behind the scenes. It was jam-packed with great information & delivered in a fun way."

    Read more about the Charity running this project.


    Robin Norton-Hale

    Artistic Director - will oversee the project and make sure all aims are met

    Sophie Larsmon

    Learning & Participation Director - will liaise with schools and design workshops in conjunction with teachers & pupils

    Amy Novadnieks

    Producer - will ensure feedback is collected and repeat bookings are made by schools in the future

    The Arcola Theatre's Creative Engagement Team

    They will train our singers in workshop delivery. Known to make “an outstanding contribution to the development & ongoing success of local schools".