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Since 2010 Northern Ireland Opera has designed inspiring and inclusive education and outreach activities for people of all ages and from all backgrounds. Contact us if you’d like to get involved.

Northern Ireland Opera bring innovative new productions of the highest artistic quality to the stage, reflecting the people, history and landscape of the area. We champion the amazing creative artists born on the island of Ireland, and support the most promising young opera talent by providing opportunities to perform in our productions.

At the core of Northern Ireland Opera’s mission is the belief that people of all ages and from all backgrounds are entitled to experience the heart-pumping drama, the spell-binding designs and mesmerising live music that in combination makes opera ‘the total art form’.

Since 2010 we have successfully designed an inspiring and inclusive portfolio of education and outreach activities. We have established relationships with educators throughout the country, delivering opera workshops in preparation for new audiences coming to see our fully-staged professional productions. Our team have created outreach programmes to bring music and theatre to some of the most vulnerable people in Northern Ireland, connecting with charities and youth groups in areas of social and economic deprivation. We have worked in partnership with local arts organisations and opera industry experts to create enriching projects and recitals that support our creative landscape, igniting every participant’s imagination.

During 2020 and due to the pandemic, we have rapidly adapted our outreach programme to enable us to support both singers and the community within the parameters of the public health crisis. We have produced a series of activity videos for children during lockdown, exploring different aspects and roles in opera, from costume (Make a superhero outfit from cardboard!) to music (Build a kitchen percussion set!) to singing lessons, props, lighting and numerous other skill sets required in the world of opera.  We launched an online opera club during lockdown, with a viewing guide designed for those entirely new to opera and also those who were regular opera enthusiasts. For secondary school students, we have also begun a series on careers in opera and theatre, asking opera professionals five questions about what they do at work.

Now lockdown has eased, we are launching two initiatives: The Associate Artists, who are ten opera singers, alumni of NI Opera productions or the Studio programme, who are based in Northern Ireland at present. They will bring live opera safely to community and charity events across the country during the pandemic to ensure that as many people as possible can experience and be inspired by their performances.  They will also work with us on our year-long project with ten partner schools, primary and secondary, throughout Northern Ireland. We’ll be working with teachers and pupils to enhance their music educational projects and with the aim of each school producing a ten minute opera on a subject or issue of the children’s choice in summer 2021, either online or as an actual performance depending on the public health scenario next year.

Find out more about some of our outreach initiatives below:

Schools Outreach Programme 2020/21

The Associate Artists: Bringing Opera to Communities during the Pandemic

Lockdown Activities: March to August 2020

Die Fledermaus: Outreach Week September 2019

Pamplemousse: Schools workshops and N.I. tour.

Sweeney Todd: Workshops and resource pack

Rigoletto Outreach Week

Little Lullabies

Our Grand Voices!

Radamisto Schools Workshops

There are exciting opportunities for everyone to engage with Northern Ireland Opera.

To discover or discuss a project with Northern Ireland Opera’s Outreach and Education initiatives, please contact us at or call us on +44 (0)28 9027 7734

Click on the gallery below to see images of a wide range of our activities.