ENO turns in despair to the movies

ENO turns in despair to the movies


norman lebrecht

September 21, 2016

English National Opera, unable to afford much by way of new productions, is imitating some of the London orchestras by running a movie at the Coliseum with live orchestral soundtrack.


The point? To keep the orchestra employed and the house from going dark.

Details here.



  • Simon J Evnine says:

    I don’t know about the “… in despair”. It seems a sensible use of resources.
    I think I’ll go !

  • mr oakmountain says:

    Herrmann’s North by North-West is an excellent score. Hearing it live with the film sounds fantastic. What again was the problem with this idea???

    • V.Lind says:

      The ENO is desperately trying to raise some revenue by engaging in a musical activity to further fund its priority but expensive musical activities.

      The swine! 🙂

  • Will says:

    Sounds like a great idea to me – good for them!

  • Una says:

    Should have done it years ago and not wait until the coffers were empty. I bet it will be good.

  • Eric says:

    The ROH Orchestra did something similar in 2006, when they had a dark night, and performed Carl Davis’s orchestral score to the 1925 Lon Chaney silent film, ‘The Phantom of the Opera’. Doubly serendipitous, given that ROH were in the middle of a run of Gounod’s ‘Faust’ at the time, the same work being staged by Paris Opera in the film.

  • Steve Bauman says:

    Alexander Nevsky is another great film with Prokoviev’s wonderful score which could use live accompaniment at ENO. It has been done here in San Francisco with great success. Other silents (Farrar’s Carmen, Caruso’s “My Cousin”) could also be adapted.

  • David Boxwell says:

    Most major American orchestras do this now to keep the bailiff from the door (especially for films scored by Herrmann, Danny Elfman, John Williams et al). Hardly a sign of the Apocalypse.

  • lusy says:

    Yes, it’s done in San Fransisco