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  • Student opportunities at the Royal Opera House: a Student Ambassador's perspective

Student opportunities at the Royal Opera House: a Student Ambassador's perspective

From amphi performances to discounted cinema tickets, there are loads of ways to get involved at the ROH.

By Hannah Redfern (ROH Student Ambassador (Loughborough University))

25 July 2016 at 3.10pm | Comment on this article

The atmosphere

Something I really enjoy about the ROH Student premieres is the atmosphere, both in the theatre and in the run-up to the event. Just being in the building, being involved with pre-show activities and grabbing a discounted student drink is something I and my friends always love to do. As you walk into the theatre you are instantly taken aback by the famous red and gold – although I’m a regular, every time I seem to have forgotten just how beautiful the venue is. I usually go on a 'student amphi night' and the place is always buzzing – we are definitely a rowdy lot when we want to be!

I could get used to evenings like this 😍 #roh #rohgiselle #rohstudents #coventgarden

A photo posted by Louise Wells (@louise0923) on

  The show One of my favourite moments is when the orchestra first begins to play – it gives me the chills. The music is always something I look forward to, whether I know it well, or if not, seeing how a score works with everything else. The set designs and the technology used in ROH shows are just insane. There are usually so many incredible visuals, from pyrotechnics to projections, strobes to moving machinery and props – it’s a show in itself! Not to mention the costuming – take Steven McRae’s make-up in Frankenstein for a spectacular example. It makes you realize that there are so many art forms involved that combine to create an inspiring and surreal experience. You can really see why people talk about 'the experience' of the ballet or opera.

Get online

Everyone loves a bit of social media stalking (perfect revision break!) and the hype around ROH shows is amazing! I always watch the Insights on the ROH Youtube channel, as well as the trailer – which usually gets me very excited! Social media accounts of the performers can give amazing backstage snippets too. Try and follow the performers who have accounts – it’s always so interesting to see their day-to-day lives, as well as teasers about the show. I also love to read the audience reaction pieces on the ROH website after the opening night!

See it without going

Can’t get to London to see it live? The ROH Cinema season is perfect for students who can’t get to London easily or cheaply! I have seen quite a few ROH shows at the cinema using the student ‘2 for a tenner’ deal, which is not only great value but also means you can take a friend. Watching in the cinema is different from seeing it in the theatre, but there are many perks: including exclusive backstage footage and interviews during the intervals, close-up shots of the performers and of course – popcorn. Make sure you check out BP Big Screens too.

In short...

We are extremely lucky that theatre is so accessible these days – the ROH Student Scheme in particular opens up so many avenues for us to get involved. From cheap tickets and special student performances to even giving lucky competition winners a day backstage – there is just so much you can get involved with! If you have heard about the scheme but don’t know much about it, check out the website. If you have never been and are unsure if ballet or opera is for you, well you know what they say... you never know unless you try it!

Are you a student? Sign up to ROH Students for free. And if you'd like to become a Student Ambassador, applications are now open.

ROH Students is generously made possible by the Bunting Family and Simon Robey.

By Hannah Redfern (ROH Student Ambassador (Loughborough University))

25 July 2016 at 3.10pm

This article has been categorised Opera and tagged ROH Students, Student Ambassadors, Student Aphitheatre performances

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