Behind Doors At Covent Garden

Sir Colin Southgate steps down as chairman of Covent Garden after a tumultuous five years. “In February 1998, when Southgate was parachuted in by Chris Smith, the Culture Secretary, it seemed unlikely that there would be a Royal Opera House left for anyone to visit. The builders had been in for almost two years, their costs were soaring towards £214 million and the imposition of a businessman outsider was generally believed to be the Government’s last throw before merging Covent Garden with English National Opera and disbanding the orchestra.”