Page last updated at 14:27 GMT, Monday, 22 September 2008 15:27 UK

Curtain up for Royal Opera online

Don Giovanni
Singers performing Don Giovanni in an Austrian production

Opera fans will be able to watch the whole of Mozart's Don Giovanni online from next month after a major redesign of the Royal Opera House website.

A performance of the masterpiece, filmed at London's Covent Garden earlier this month, will be put on the Royal Opera's new site on 5 October.

The new multimedia website aims to make it easier for people to find out about opera and ballet.

Archive material includes first night cast lists going back to 1946.

The website also features trailers, interviews with artists and documentary footage.

We're very excited by the potential this offers in terms of attracting newcomers and potential audience members
Tony Hall
Royal Opera House

Other plans for the website include allowing readers to post audience reviews.

There are also plans to add other full performances to view on the website.

"We hope that the relaunched site provides a stimulating and dynamic online environment and we're very excited by the potential this offers in terms of attracting newcomers and potential audience members," chief executive Tony Hall said.

Don Giovanni will be available free of charge and will be split into 12 "natural chapters".

The performance was filmed on the opening night of the Royal Opera House's new season on 8 September.

In an attempt to reach out to new audiences, the Royal Opera invited readers of the Sun newspaper to enter a ballot to buy tickets for the performance at London's Covent Garden.

The show was also broadcast live to the 18-strong Picturehouse cinema chain - another first for the opera house.

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