Artistic director of the English National Opera resigns

Daniel Kramer will leave in July to focus on his other directing commitments

Daniel Kramer (Photograph: ENO/Linda Nyland)
Daniel Kramer (Photograph: ENO/Linda Nyland)

The artistic director of the English National Opera has resigned from the charity.

In a statement, the ENO said that Daniel Kramer would stand down at the end of July to focus on directing more opera and theatre.

He will continue to work with the ENO until the end of the year as a freelance artistic consultant to oversee four operas from the Orpheus series, the ENO statement said.

Kramer said that stepping down would allow him to focus full-time on his directing commitments in 2019 and 2020, adding that no experience had been "more fruitful, more demanding nor more clarifying to my beliefs as an artist".

He said: "I am proud to leave ENO after a season that has broken box-office records, innovated and challenged, while delivering commercial success.

"We have recruited thousands of new, diverse and young audience members, and over-achieved our year’s box-office target, delivering on our promise to provide opera for all and reflect the diversity of our culture.

"I thank everyone who crossed my path at ENO and wish everyone at ENO the absolute best in this new chapter."

Harry Brunjes, chair of the ENO, said: "Over the course of his three years in the role, Daniel Kramer’s focus on creative artistic output is the underlying reason why our most recent season was both thought-provoking and entertaining, as well as commercially successful.

"On behalf of the board I would like to personally thank him for all of his hard work and dedication to ENO. We wish him the best of luck as he pursues fantastic opportunities around the world."

The news comes after a troubled few years for the ENO, which had its Arts Council funding cut by £5m in 2015 and was then removed from the council’s national portfolio of funded organisations because of serious concerns about its governance and business model.

The ENO was readmitted to the Arts Council’s portfolio in 2017 after changes were made by chief executive Cressida Pollock, who was appointed in 2015 and left the role last year.

Martyn Rose, former chair of the ENO, left in January 2015 after less than two years at the helm, and was followed by the executive director, Henriette Götz, days later.

Mark Wigglesworth, former music director at the ENO, quit in 2016, citing budget cuts at the organisation as a reason.

The ENO also faced a strike threat from the opera’s chorus in 2016 over a pay dispute.

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