Thousands of children celebrate the arts with the Royal Opera House  

On Tuesday (2nd July), tens of thousands of school children came together to celebrate dancing, singing, and design.   

Spearheaded by the Royal Opera House, who has been championing creative education for four decades, Create Day brings together children from across the UK to take part in interactive lessons and performances, both in person and virtually.  

Hosted by Royal Ballet Principal Character Artist Gary Avis and television presenter Mwaksy Mudenda, the Royal Opera House artists broadcast live into schools and regional hubs in Thurrock and Grantham, giving children across the country access to a full school day of creative learning.  

Part of the Royal Opera House’s long-standing National Schools’ Programme, Create Day is open to any school in England, celebrating the importance of arts education for every child.  The Royal Opera House has partnered with UNICEF to use Create Day to teach students about the importance of the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child, particularly focusing on the right to education. 

Theatres and creative institutions across the UK are working hard to provide outreach to children in their local communities, but they need government support. Every child should have the opportunity to access and experience this country’s world-leading theatre. That is why the Society of London Theatre (SOLT) and UK Theatre are asking all political parties to commit to providing funding so that every child goes to the theatre by the time they leave school. 

Jillian Barker, Director of Learning and Participation at the Royal Opera House, said: “We want to inspire creativity and give students and young people as many opportunities as possible to access arts education, which is why we’re so excited that we can deliver an event like Create Day to tens of thousands of children across the country. Seeing young people from all different areas, backgrounds and ages come together to learn, sing, dance and be moved by the arts truly shows the positive impact that educational, arts-based programmes can have on students and teachers.” 

Martin Russell, RRSA Programme Director at UNICEF UK, said: “The arts offer a powerful vehicle for exploring children’s rights and the principles and values that underpin rights. UNICEF UK is delighted to be collaborating with the Royal Opera House on Create Day, bringing both the arts and children’s rights to children across the UK in a really impactful way.