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MU Fights for English National Opera's Future

We are continuing to make the case for the English National Opera (ENO), writing to key stakeholders and emphasising the impact that hastily made plans and underfunding will have on the wider classical music industry.

Published: 10 July 2023 | 2:41 PM Updated: 12 July 2023 | 4:39 PM

The MU have been in continued talks following the funding cuts to the English National Opera (ENO) which were announced by Arts Council England (ACE) in November of last year.

Since the cuts were announced, and following months of difficult conversations, we have seen a motion passed at the London Assembly to save the ENO from a full relocation – but the timescale and funding remain a major point of concern for the MU, Equity, Bectu and the wider arts community. We are continuing to press this issue as an urgent matter.

A diminution in pay and terms across many orchestras does not paint a bright future

In a recent letter to Darren Henley (Chief Executive of ACE), MU General Secretary Naomi Pohl said:

“What are young musicians in the colleges and conservatories to aspire to now? With threats at the BBC and a diminution in pay and terms across many orchestras, we are far from painting a vision of a bright future for our young musician community.”

MU London Regional Organiser Jamie Pullman added, "We are very worried about the future of classical music, and opera particularly. With 12 Culture Secretaries in 13 years, it's clear that this government doesn't take the sector seriously no matter how many times the benefits it brings are made clear.”

We’ve sent a letter along similar lines to Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport Lucy Frazer, urging her to consider the effect of the cuts not just on the ENO but on the classical music industry as a whole.

Highlights from the campaign to save the ENO and protect arts funding

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