This important collaboration has enabled over 1.3 million people, principally from the UK but now increasingly worldwide, to experience world-class opera and ballet performances through free bp big screens relays of live performances or via the internet. Others have joined in learning and participation projects from Aberdeen to London and beyond. In 2016 we announced a further renewal of our partnership until 2022 – ensuring that many more people will have access to the best of the UK's culture well into the future.
For the past 21 years, bp has supported the free Big Screens live relays of some of the world's most loved operas and ballet performances direct from Covent Garden to a growing number of sites across the country.
Each screening features exclusive backstage films, competitions and the best live performances at venues across the UK. It's a perfect opportunity to bring friends and family, enjoy a picnic and share an excellent evening – all for free!
In 2019, around 38,000 people watched 48 bp Big Screens in 25 locations across the UK. The ballet Romeo and Juliet plus the operas Carmen and The Marriage of Figaro drew audiences from locations from London, the Isle of Wight, Warrington and Aberdeen to Swansea, Exmouth, Bristol and Hull.
A further 393,000 people worldwide watched the bp Big Screens webcast performances of Carmen and The Marriage of Figaro via the Royal Opera House's Facebook and YouTube platforms, logging on from Argentina to Vietnam, Finland to New Zealand.
This follows a further 112,000 people across the globe who in 2018 watched the bp Big Screens webcast performances of La bohѐme and Don Giovanni. In 2017, some 100,000 people watched an online performance of Tosca, while 66,000 people saw Nabucco and Il trovatore in 2016. The first of the Royal Opera House's and bp Big Screens live online streaming events was of La traviata in 2014 when 15,000 people logged on.
All experienced the very best of opera and ballet, complete with dramatic plots, passion, intrigue, love, jealousy and revenge.
Sadly, owing to the coronavirus pandemic, bp Big Screens have been cancelled this year.