How ENO Breathe helped me

On this page, you’ll hear from past participants about how the ENO Breathe programme helped them, as well as some more information about what ENO Breathe offers participants beyond the 6-week programme.

ENO Breathe Trailer


Our Story

Following a successful pilot programme involving 12 participants in Autumn 2020, the ENO Breathe programme was rolled out nationally in January 2021. In these past three years we have: worked with over 3000 participants; written three lullabies & performed them at the London Coliseum; worked with over twenty freelance artists; won several awards; created 10 issues of the ENO Breathe Participant Newsletter, shared our story in over 100 television, radio and media interviews in over 6 continents.

As of December 2023, 3053 participants from across England have taken part in the ENO Breathe programme.

The Facts

  • 94% of participants said that ENO Breathe met their expectations
  • 98% would recommend ENO Breathe to others experiencing long Covid symptoms
  • 80% of participants said that their levels of breathlessness had improved
  • 73% of participants said their levels of anxiety were better
  • 80% said their general well being improved since starting of the programme
  • 87% said that ENO Breathe had a positive impact on their General Wellbeing.

To date, ENO Breathe has been evaluated by an independent evaluator following an evaluation methodology co-designed with our colleagues at Imperial College. The methodology uses standardised healthcare metrics which are recognised by the NHS. Our evaluation data is analysed periodically, and we have found the results of our ongoing evaluation to be consistent with the findings presented above (from the first 1084 patients to take part in the ENO Breathe programme). 

A Randomised Controlled Trial was conducted on ENO Breathe in the summer of 2021 by academics at Imperial College London and we were delighted that the results were published in The Lancet Respiratory Medicine journal in April 2022. The trial involved 150 participants. More information on the trial, the summary of results, and access to the full article can be found here: ENO Breathe Announces Results of Randomised Controlled Trial 

The Feeling

A few words from past ENO Breathe participants:

“I never before had an experience like this. I didn’t think things like singing could help me with my breathing and improve my recovery from Covid and it has really helped me emotionally and physically.”

“ENO made me feel like someone still cared and something was actively being done to recognise and ‘treat’ long covid and not let us become lost in the ether.”

” ENO Breathe has helped me by showing me breathing techniques and ways to relax my vocal cords which I use daily. I also use the relaxation methods on a daily basis, they help me enormously as I suffer with anxiety now. ENO Breathe helped me with practical and mindful ways to cope with my life when I felt forgotten and I will be forever grateful.”

“I definitely know that during my day to day life, I’m calling upon things that I’ve done in the course. I’ve no doubt that ENO has been one of the causes of my progress over the last six weeks.”

Watch past participant Wayne’s Story!

Recognition for the ENO Breathe programme

ENO Breathe was awarded the prestigious RPS Impact Award in 2021. To view the award ceremony and hear our acceptance speech, visit this link (jump to 1”12”01).

The project was also shortlisted for The Stage Community Project of the Year and Broadway World UK Awards under the category of Lockdown Hero.

Press Coverage (as of October 2023)

587 total pieces of coverage
6 continents reached
100 interviews with key spokespeople
393 broadcast mentions
88 national broadcast mentions
315 regional broadcast mentions
18 international broadcast mentions

Notable articles:

Read an article from BBC Music Magazine about ENO Breathe, and it’s conception here.

Listen to an interview from CBC with past participant Joanna Herman, and our Creative Director Suzi Zumpe here.

BBC News Online – a feature written by Jon Kay following the 3rd May ENO Breathe performance on the London Coliseum stage, includes interviews with Jenny Mollica, and participants: Dave Smith, Dr Hannah King, Marj Levy. Read it here.

ITV News report, aired on the ITV News at 10. Watch it here.

Our Community

Many of the individuals who have completed the ENO Breathe 6-week programme continue to engage with ENO Breathe’s regular weekly drop-in Twilight sessions and have expressed a desire to continue singing and connecting with each other.

To respond to this, between December 2022 and May 2023 we offered a series of new creative sessions to the ENO Breathe community. In these sessions, we wanted to hear the participants’ ideas & stories and connect with their creativity to help us craft some new lullabies together.

You can find out more about this creative project on our webpage: ENO Breathe Singing & Song Writing Sessions

As a culmination to this project, on Wednesday 3 May 2023, 67 ENO Breathe participants, representing the larger community of over 2,500 participants performed these newly-created lullabies to a full auditorium, alongside the ENO Orchestra.

BBC Breakfast recorded segments of the final rehearsals and performance, following the story of ENO Breathe participant Dave Smith. You can watch their news segment here.

Please enjoy viewing a behind-the-scenes video of the day, and a video of the full five minute performance via the links below:
Behind the scenes video
Full lullabies performance video

We look forward to continuing to invite ENO Breathe participants to use their creative flare for similar projects in future.


ENO Breathe is provided to participants free of charge – the ENO raises the funds from generous individuals like you and its audience, trusts and individuals. ENO Breathe has been described as a “tool box full of hope” by participants – you can give that hope today to those suffering with long COVID by making a gift, helping us reach those who need ENO Breathe: To support today click here

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