News release

Date: 17th May 2021

Glyndebourne Festival Returns With Support of Rapid, Lab-Free COVID-19 PCR Testing from DnaNudge

World-Famous Opera House Benefitting From Regular DnaNudge COVID-19 ‘Bubble’ Testing For Staff And Performers Ahead of Acclaimed Festival

London, United Kingdom, May 17 2021 – DnaNudge, developer of the pioneering rapid, lab-free CovidNudge test, is supporting the return of the world-famous Glyndebourne Festival this May by delivering regular DnaNudge COVID-19 ‘Bubble’ testing to 200 performers and staff. DnaNudge is performing the weekly RT-PCR pool testing – which provides gold-standard results in just over an hour – on-site at the Glyndebourne opera house in East Sussex ahead of the much-anticipated return of the acclaimed annual Festival.

DnaNudge’s COVID-19 Bubble Test offers lab-standard, highly-accurate group testing on one cartridge for ‘bubbles’ of up to 10 people who do not have symptoms of coronavirus infection.  DnaNudge is already providing testing services to the London Symphony Orchestra and a growing number of arts and cultural organisations as the vital UK arts sector makes preparations to safely re-open to performers and audiences over the coming months.

The Glyndebourne Festival 2021 is currently in rehearsal and will run from 20 May – 29 August, offering a programme of world-class opera including new productions of Kata Kabanova by Janacek, Il turco in Italia by Rossini and Verdi's Luisa Miller.

Glyndebourne’s Managing Director Sarah Hopwood comments: “We are absolutely thrilled to be able to stage the Glyndebourne Festival this year, with DnaNudge’s support. The ability for us to access clinical-grade testing on-site – both throughout rehearsals and during performance runs – is an essential part of the safety measures we have put in place to safeguard our incredible artists and staff, ensuring that our much-missed members and loyal supporters can finally be extended a very warm welcome back to Glyndebourne.”

In 2020, DnaNudge co-founder and CEO Professor Toumazou was honoured with The Royal Academy of Engineering President's Special Award for Pandemic Service in recognition of DnaNudge’s exceptional achievement in developing the CovidNudge RT-PCR (reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction) test, which delivers accurate results in just over an hour, without the need for a laboratory. The CE-marked test – adapted in record time from DnaNudge’s existing in-store consumer DNA testing service – is in widespread use throughout UK NHS hospitals following a major order last August by the government’s Department of Health and Social Care. The new COVID-19 Bubble Test is now available to asymptomatic UK consumers as a private test, delivered in-store by appointment and as a by-post service.

Commenting on DnaNudge’s support for the Glyndebourne Festival, Professor Chris Toumazou FRS, FREng, FMedSci, CEO and co-founder of DnaNudge and founder of the Institute of Biomedical Engineering at Imperial College London said: “We are so proud and pleased that our rapid, lab-free testing is playing a key role in bringing the much-loved Glyndebourne Festival back to the heart of the UK’s summer arts programme. From the outset, DnaNudge has been strongly committed to supporting the successful return of the UK arts and cultural sector, which has been so profoundly challenged by the COVID-19 pandemic. We are delighted to be able to offer our transformative COVID-19 Bubble testing service to the extraordinary Glyndebourne team as they prepare to bring back for audiences the stunning and memorable productions for which the Festival is deservedly revered.”

For more information about the DnaNudge COVID-19 Bubble Test, please visit:


About DnaNudge (

DnaNudge is the developer of the world’s first service to use consumers’ own DNA plus lifestyle factors to nudge people towards healthier choices while shopping. The DnaNudge service analyses and maps users’ genetic profile to key nutrition-related health traits such as obesity, diabetes, hypertension and cholesterol, enabling customers to be guided by their DNA towards healthier eating. The service has been developed by world-renowned biomedical engineer Regius Professor Chris Toumazou FRS and published geneticist Dr Maria Karvela.

This ground-breaking in-store DNA testing service created to address an epidemic – obesity and Type 2 diabetes – has now been successfully adapted for the fight against a pandemic, with the development of the rapid, lab-free CovidNudge RT-PCR test. CovidNudge can accurately detect COVID-19 and other viruses in just over an hour, without the need for a laboratory, and is now in UK NHS roll-out.

About Glyndebourne (

Glyndebourne is recognised internationally as one of the great opera houses; a reputation that stems from a passion for artistic excellence encapsulated in founder John Christie’s insistence on doing ‘not the best we can do but the best that can be done anywhere’.

John and his opera singer wife, Audrey Mildmay, founded the Glyndebourne Festival in 1934. In 1968 the Glyndebourne Tour was established to bring opera to new audiences across the country and create opportunities for talented young singers.

Today Glyndebourne is a 12-month operation. The Festival runs from May to August with a programme of six operas in a 1,200-seat opera house.  The annual Tour takes place from October to December. The second Glyndebourne Opera Cup singing competition took place in March 2020. A widely respected learning and engagement programme is active year-round staging new work and delivering projects to enhance the understanding and enjoyment of opera.

Together the Festival and Tour present 120 performances annually to an audience of 150,000 with many more people experiencing Glyndebourne’s work through its yearly programme of cinema screenings and free online streamings. Glyndebourne has pioneered specialist recordings to share its work with a global audience through these channels and as part of this mission to reach new audiences, also offers reduced-price tickets to under-30s.

Since its founding, Glyndebourne has remained financially independent and, whilst receiving valued Arts Council support for the Tour and  learning and engagement work, the Festival receives no public subsidy. As a registered charity, our work is funded by Box Office income, our Members and supporters.

For further information please contact:
PRESS CONTACT for DnaNudge: Nicky Denovan EvokedSet PR Email: nicky[at]evokedset[dot]com Phone: +44 (0) 118 328 2782 PRESS CONTACT for Glyndebourne: Kate Harvey Senior Press Manager Email: kate[dot]harvey[at]glyndebourne[dot]com Phone: +44 (0) 1273 812 321 Ext. 2234

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