Letter: Operatic tradition

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Sir: I am amazed (or maybe I shouldn't be) that Chris Smith is angry at the Royal Opera House for specifying evening dress at its reopening ("Smith asks opera for evening dress ban", 8 November). Would he prefer jeans and a T-shirt?

I would be very upset if the tradition of black tie were to be swept away by petty politicians portraying themselves as "anti-elitist". Of course black tie should not be used for every event, but for special occasions it is so much smarter. It is not elitist, but a lovely, harmless tradition and one that should be upheld.


St Catharine's College, Cambridge