The comedian and TV presenter, who hosts Landscape Artist of the Year on Sky Arts alongside the broadcaster and Labour peer Joan Bakewell, is a regular visitor to the opera.
The West Bromwich-born presenter has a Midlands accent and presented programmes including Fantasy Football, Baddiel and Skinner Unplanned and Room 101.
“People ask me: ‘Why are you doing an art show?’ And that’s about social class,” Skinner told the Radio Times.
“I did Sunday Brunch with a posh lad from Made in Chelsea and he said: ‘I’m a bit hungover because I was at an art fair all night.’ Nobody said: ‘You seem a bit of an idiot, what are you doing at an art fair?’ He wasn’t obvious art fair material but he had the right accent.”
Skinner’s interest in art has led him to host tours of the National Gallery in London and make a film about performance art for the Tate.
He and Bakewell have become “opera buddies” and “properly good friends” through three series of Landscape Artist of the Year, which returns next week. “I live for that moment when she says: ‘You have four Rs [hours],’” he said of her accent. Read more