When we got an invite to the Royal Opera House ‘Mad Hatters and Masked Balls’ Family Sunday in the heart of Covent Garden I am not going to lie I gave out a tiny squeal. One, because I have never been there and two, because the day sounded AMAZING!! It promised to be a transformation into scenes from the parties, feasts and festivities that have bought so many operas and ballets to life and it certainly did just that. The day gave a real glimpse of life behind the scenes at the Royal Opera House and boy was it impressive. From trying out props such as wigs and masks, testing out swords and rubber guns, which totally looked the real deal, to trying on crowns and Mad Hatter hats, to getting to learn and stage an iconic scene from ‘La Traviata’. We were in our element. Seeing a room full of families singing and acting their hearts out was really quite spectacular and a whole heap of fun. Not to mention dressing up and the chance to rummage through real Opera House costumes to find your Traviata character, not your average Sunday that’s for sure. There was also plenty of relevant arts and crafts including mask making, scene building and making a feast for the Mad Hatters Tea Party which we actually got to partake in. Running around the Royal Opera House with Alice, the Mad Hatter, a white rabbit and the Queen of Hearts felt totally bonkers but utterly wonderful, and stumbling across old décor and new only added to it, what a glorious venue. Basically there was something for everyone and it certainly gave an insight into the wonderous world of opera, I’m so booking some tickets to go see an opera there now.
It was a pretty wow experience throughout and a day we will never forget. The place is huge so at times we felt a little lost but with a shed load of welcoming staff you couldn’t go too wrong and part of the joy of it all was finding corridors and doors that led you through bits of the Royal Opera House you may never see. The suggested age is 3+ but I think Ivy’s age of 4 and above would be perfect.
We absolutely recommend you try out one of the Family Sunday’s, rubbing soldiers with actual performers and creative teams felt like we were doing something really quite special and it has certainly opened my daughters eyes to the world of Opera, let alone mine.
Tips if you visit
If there are specific timings of the events allow yourself plenty of time to get to them. Take a good look at the itinerary to make sure you don’t miss anything out, we managed to miss a few things as we ran out of time. Lastly, order yourself a latte and the rich chocolate cake, totally scrummy, you wont be disappointed!
The next Family Sunday is on 17 February and the theme is ‘Romeo and Juliet’. Tickets cost £8 for under 18s and £10 for adults. To find out more from Royal Opera House events click here https://www.roh.org.uk/functions/family-sundays.
Thanks to the Royal Opera House for our tickets, invitation and goody bag.