Would you Adam-and-Eve it? Having been criticised for banning bottles from musicals and rock shows for fear they might contain gin, English National Opera has now decided to inflict the same punishment on operagoers – in the interests of inclusivity, natch.
Here’s what the new chief exec, Stuart Murphy, says:
After the feedback this weekend we were concerned that our original tailored policy gave some people the impression that we were taking an elitist approach to opera, yet this approach couldn’t be further from the truth. ENO was built on presenting opera for all – that’s why we sing in English, for instance, it’s why we give away thousands of tickets to our dress rehearsals and it’s why a fifth of all of our opera tickets are priced at £20 or less. Offering opera for everyone is in our DNA.
Today we’ve moved quickly to update our policy so that it’s consistent across all of our work. Going forward we won’t allow any food or drink to be brought into the Coliseum for any performance, irrespective of genre. Our full policy can be found here.
It gets even more PC:
This is about being consistent and fair to everyone. As ever, we will provide filtered water for free at every level and in every bar at the Coliseum. As a licence holder, we have a duty of care to our audience and among those legal obligations, we have to prevent public nuisance, protect public health, safely protect children and secure public safety and so, as with any bar, this means ensuring people don’t consume their own alcohol in the venue. As we always have done, audience members with dietary or access requirements can contact us before they arrive so we can ensure that they are able to bring in whatever they need for medical reasons.
This is a terrible way to start a new job.