royal opera house


Behind-the-Scenes at London’s Royal Opera House with @londonlivingdoll

For more behind-the-scenes photos of the BAFTA film awards at the Royal Opera House, explore the location page and follow @londonlivingdoll.

Five years ago, Dolly Brown (@londonlivingdoll) made a New Year’s resolution to take better advantage of the cultural wealth London has to offer. Working as a lawyer in London by day, Dolly describes her Instagram feed as an ‘arts diary.’ She attends exhibitions all over the city in her spare time, as well as many ballet and opera shows at one of her favorite venues, Covent Garden’s Royal Opera House (@royaloperahouse). “It is architecturally beautiful with its large, glass-ceilinged hall and a fantastic terrace overlooking Covent Garden,” she says. “I can’t think of a more perfect evening than having dinner and drinks at the ROH followed by an amazing Kenneth MacMillan ballet, like ‘Romeo and Juliet.’”

This weekend, the 1732 Grade I-listed building will be dressed up for the 2015 British Academy of Film and Television Arts film awards (@bafta) with actors from all over the world visiting its gilded auditorium.

Dolly suspects that people would say the themes of her photos are color and details. “When I think about the images I find the most interesting to look at, it seems to me that I’m much more engaged by abstract images than monumental ones, as they encourage you to do the work of imagining what has been excluded from the shot and to wonder why,” she says. “I’m always as interested in what is out of frame as what is inside it.”


My photos of Benedict Cumberbatch at the GQ Men of the Year Awards 2014

A rarely-seen view - The view from our Orchestra Pit

‘Everyone warns you about the noise. But nobody mentions the quiet. It’s a particular sort of quiet – tense, cutting and pregnant. Sitting in the pit at the Royal Opera House as the lights go down, you hear a silence the like of which you’ve never heard before. Even when nobody’s playing or speaking, there’s still the muffled breathing of a violinist or the gentle patter of a flute’s exercising keys. But when the conductor raises the baton, even that drops away. You’re plunged into a total, concentrated sonic vacuum. You could hear a pin drop – such is the acoustic cramp of the pit, where nothing goes unheard…’

Read what it’s like working and performing in our orchestra pit

(Photo: © ROH/Sim Canetty-Clarke, 2014)