Covent Garden is unthinkable without the presence of the Royal Opera House, and the latter is inseparable from Covent Garden, one of the most attractive places in central London. These two have had a history of good partnership, and they are now officially partnering to organise a month-long free cultural festival, ‘ROH Unlocked’.
Unlocked high culture
‘ROH Unlocked’ is literally the Royal Opera House expanding itself to Covent Garden, or rather, the whole Covent Garden transforming itself into the Royal Opera House. The home for opera and ballet, so-called high culture, is now accessible from the street level. This month-long free festival of dancing, singing and theatrical appreciation started on 10th July as a part of the Royal Opera House’s ‘Learning and Participation programme’, which has provided various creative activities for families and individuals nationwide.
Personally I couldn’t witness its opening, but many residents, tourists and onlookers seemed to enjoy open-air activities such as the performance by The Royal Opera House Chorus, participatory workshops of singing and dancing, and so on.
Royal Opera House - Unlocked Festival - Summer Stage - ROH Chorus
The whole event also navigates the visitors to the ROH Story Shop where you can immerse yourselves in fairytale experiences, and to a self-guided tour of Theatrical Trail of Covent Garden to discover not only about the beloved theatre itself but also about the charm of the neighbourhood.
During the festivity, the Royal Opera House Arcade is decorated with the gorgeous window displays showing items related to performing arts, such as theatrical masks, arty hats, colourful tutus from The Sleeping Beauty.
The most eye-catching exhibition among them is the showcase of customised pointe shoes that have been upcycled and rejuvenated by renowned designers such as ROKSANDA, ERDEM, Simone Rocha, Rejina Pyo, Halpern, and Liberty.
Some of these reimagined pointe shoes are the main prizes that you could win at the Royal Opera House Recovery Campaign Draw. This campaign is to ease the lockdown-related financial struggle of the theatre. You can enter the draw from just £5 to support them. Other prizes include two tickets to an ROH performance, three-course dinner for two at the Piazza Restaurant, etc.
Although the ROH’s official inhouse programme may be off-season now, their open-house festivity is on-season until 10th August. Let’s give locked-on support for the unlocked theatre and enjoy the cultural London summer.
The Royal Opera House Recovery Campaign Draw
(Tickets £5 each / The competition is open to UK mainland residents only / Entry until 31st August 2021)
(I couldn’t find details on this page though… If there is the official programme somewhere, please let me know)