English National Opera celebrated 50 years in residence at the London Coliseum on 10 October 2018, with an amazing evening featuring some of our greatest hits.
Scenes from Rigoletto, Tosca, Aknaten, The Magic Flute, Peter Grimes and loads more were performed by the legends of ENO, alongside ENO’s gifted Harewood Artists, our Olivier Award-winning chorus and our incredible orchestra. And the ENO Baylis Youth Programme took centre stage, singing alongside opera singers Gweneth Ann-Rand, Eleanor Garside, Phoebe Haines, Themba Mvula, and Harewood Artist William Morgan, in a performance that brought the house down.
A real highlight was Alan Opie – an absolute superstar of ENO – presenting Dr Jonathan Miller with the first ever ENO Lilian Baylis Fellowship; a formal acknowledgement of his outstanding contribution to ENO’s life and work.
Over the last four decades Jonathan Miller’s stagings have been at the heart of ENO’s repertoire. From his insightful The Marriage of Figaro in 1978 to his witty The Elixir of Love in 2010, Jonathan has provided ENO with fifteen productions which have delighted audiences both new and those who come back time and again for more.
This current season sees the return of La bohème, in what will be the 82nd revival of a Jonathan Miller production in this house.
In the spirit of ENO’s ongoing commitment to the development of emerging talent, our Chief Exec Stuart Murphy awarded Baylis Alumni Rachel Oyawale the new ENO Lilian Baylis Outstanding Potential Award, launched to acknowledge someone under the age 40 who has shown exceptional promise in the world of opera.
Rachel first came to our notice as a participant in the ENO Baylis Youth Programme in 2016, and went on to be a member of the ENO Youth Company. She graduated from the Baylis programme this past summer and auditioned for the Porgy chorus. At 18 years old and in her gap year after leaving school, she is the youngest chorister to be employed by ENO, despite not yet having gone on to any formal Higher Education or Conservatoire training.
She has been offered a place to read English at Birmingham University next year and plans to continue developing her skills as a singer and performer whilst she is a student.
Nurturing the next generation of opera talent is a big part of what we’re all about, and we can’t wait to see Rachel singing on the London Coliseum stage for years to come.