La_rondineExchange Square in Manchester, Centenary Square in Bradford, Centre Square in Middlesbrough, Millennium Square in Leeds and the Piazza at MediaCity in Salford, will be screening three live performances from Covent Garden this summer from the BP Big Screen season.

Performances include The Royal Ballet’s Mayerling, The Royal Opera’s La rondine and Tosca and run across June and July.

The screenings are free and no tickets are required but seating is limited at each venue although guests will be welcome to bring their own blankets or camping chairs.

Bars and eateries around the five venues will be laying on special arrangements to cater for the expected sizeable gatherings.

Alan Titchmarsh is the new anchor broadcaster for this year’s season and he will be joined by a ‘special guest presenter’ who will be based in the crowd in Trafalgar Square.

Kasper Holten, director of The Royal Opera House, said: “These al fresco summer big screenings, now in their 26th year, are a highlight of our performing Season. To be able to offer world-class performances absolutely free and to so many venues across the UK fills us with pride.

“We first screened a live performance on a Big Screen in Covent Garden Piazza 1987 and this year we’re broadcasting to 22 different venues. This incredible growth in this free scheme would not be possible without the support of BP and we’re exceptionally grateful to them.”