Introduction to Glyndebourne
Our complete beginner’s guide to Glyndebourne. You will find information about the varied ways you can experience our operas and what you can expect from a visit here
It all began with a love story in 1934, when founder John Christie met soprano Audrey Mildmay.
Glyndebourne is one of the most celebrated opera houses in the world, delivering performances to some 150,000 people across a summer Festival and autumn season, and a year-round programme of Learning & Engagement activity.
Experience opera the way we do it. Electrifying, real, intense, creative, moving, extraordinary. All happening in one of the most evocative and beautiful spots in the country. Glyndebourne stories begin long before the curtain goes up, and end long after it has come down. And we’d love you to write your own…
Each summer, from May to August, we stage the Glyndebourne Festival – our flagship season of world-class opera where audiences enjoy the thrill of live performances in our state-of-the-art indoor auditorium. Every year our six operas run the gamut of human emotions, with some of the best music you’ll ever hear. Pick any one of them and you’re in for a night you’ll never forget.
Our Members enjoy early priority booking for the Festival, and our work just wouldn’t be possible without them. All remaining tickets go on sale to the public in March.
Ever since we started in 1934 audiences have relished the opportunity to dress up for their visit. Black tie and Glyndebourne are often synonymous – but they don’t have to be if that’s not your style. Dress up in a way that suits you. There are no rules.
For many, a Glyndebourne experience wouldn’t be complete without a picnic during our 90-minute dining interval. If alfresco dining isn’t for you, our restaurants offer a range of indoor options from classic fine dining to modern plant-forward cuisine.
In autumn, Glyndebourne comes to life once more, with six weeks of opera, concerts, masterclasses and recitals. Our autumn season offers many opportunities to experience mainstage performances in our world-class auditorium, to support young artists from our talent development programmes, and even to take part yourself.
Throughout the year we make opera and music with and for a diverse range of local people, culminating in a host of activities that take place alongside our mainstage autumn productions, a programme we call Resound.
The audience dress casually for our autumn shows, and the performances have a shorter interval. Many visitors choose to dine at one of our restaurants before or after the performance, depending on the start time of the performance.
Ever wanted the performance to start again the moment it ends? The ‘it can’t be over’ feeling afflicts our audiences a lot. This is why we created Glyndebourne Encore – a catalogue of our world-class operas available to watch in full, on demand.
Plus, each summer, we present Glyndebourne Open House, free opera streams on YouTube, bringing some of our best loved productions to a worldwide audience.
Throughout the year…
For more than 30 years, our award-winning Learning & Engagement department has been staging new work and spearheading projects to open all hearts and minds to opera. Recent projects include Resound, Balancing the Score, a new development scheme for composers from underrepresented backgrounds, and Pay the Piper, a youth opera featuring 70 young performers from the local area.
Visit our shop and explore our collection of unique opera-inspired gifts, many created in partnership with local artisans. Every purchase directly supports our work, so be sure to stop by during your visit or shop online.
Glyndebourne is a charity and the Festival, which receives no public subsidy, enables us to fund our autumn and Learning & Engagement programmes. We’re driven by a desire to open all hearts and minds to the transformative power of opera.
The Festival is funded entirely through ticket sales and the kind support of our Members and donors. Each year, as Membership places become available, we welcome new Associate Members into our family of supporters.