Emily Love (15), audience, Eastbourne, UK

“Being from a working class family, I do not have a lot of opportunities to experience culture and the arts, much less operatic performances of the high quality that I was fortunate enough to see this weekend. It is exciting, as a young person with an interest in the arts but with no way to access them, that there is such a high standard of performances taking place in my very own little town, with so many talented singers and performers. In my experience, young people are not actively encouraged to involve themselves in the arts, so to see OperaCoast doing this is refreshing to see. The performance itself was of Stravinsky’s The Rake’s Progress, based on a series of paintings by William Hogarth, which was as enthralling as it was chilling, given the dark nature of the opera. All of the performers were exceptional, and my view from the balcony was wonderful. I can’t wait to go to next year’s, which will no doubt be bigger and better than ever.”