Winner of the Royal Philharmonic Society Award for Audience Development.

Since 2001 we have been pioneering an approach to opera that promotes the artform and attracts new audiences. Each production involves local people who work and rehearse alongside the professional cast of singers and the production team led by Graham Vick. Many of those getting involved would never have thought opera could be for them. Many would never consider attending, let alone taking part in it.

In 2007 we collaborated with The Arena di Verona to stage a production of a scale rarely seen in the UK: La Traviata in the National Indoor Arena (NIA) in front of 10,000 people.

240 people from Birmingham performed alongside the professional company. Tickets were available for as little as £5 and were sold through volunteer participants and local community groups - 72% of the audience had never seen an opera before. 

Talise Trevigne (Violetta) with volunteer actors in La Traviata (2007).

Audience Comments: 

“An extraordinary, rewarding and inspirational experience."

“I had no idea opera could be like this. Amazing”

“So entertaining… who would have thought opera could be so much fun”

Paul Brown's costume designs for La Traviata. 

Graham Vick DIRECTOR

Massiniliano Stefanelli CONDUCTOR




Talise Trevigne VIOLETTA

Mark Beesley THE BARON

Wendy Dawn Thompson FLORA 

Andrew Clarke GASTON

Rodney Clarke THE MARQUIS

Pauls Putnins THE DOCTOR

Alison Crookendale ANNINA 

Mark Wilde ALFREDO

Mark Holland GERMONT

"Graham Vick’s tirelessly inventive work creating and sustain a company as all-inclusive in the best sense of the word as BOC is inspiring. The creative energy and enthusiasm driving it are hugely impressive." - The Guardian

Make a donation

Play your part in the future of opera. Help us deliver artistic, personal and social change.  

Please select a donation amount (required)
Set up a regular payment Donate