A Swedish opera company bringing a Philip Glass opera to Brooklyn feels a little like coals to Newcastle, but how did an Aussie conductor come to be involved with Folkoperan Stockholm?

A colleague invited me who is familiar with my commitment to and conducting of contemporary music. This was back in 2016 where we initially scheduled about 20 performances of Satyagraha. Each show was sold out and we had to extend the season to accommodate demand. In 2017, we once again performed to sold out audiences in Stockholm and then toured to show to Copenhagen earlier this year as part of the Copenhagen Opera Festival. We now take this to New York as part of the Next Wave Festival at the Brooklyn Academy of Music.

What is distinctive about this staging of Satyagraha?

Folkoperan has married this production with the Swedish circus company Cirkus Cirkör. The sung music uses passages from the Bhagavad Gita, the text that heavily influenced Gandhi and provided the basis of his religious practices. As the opera essentially does not have a plot or a story line, the circus artistry creates the scene and represents the human and personal...