In 1998, less than 25 years ago, State Opera South Australia staged the first full Ring Cycle by an Australian company. It had been a long wait. SOSA backed up in 2004 with Elke Neidhardt’s unforgettable production, sadly never filmed, while Opera Australia has staged Neil Armfield’s production of the Ring Cycle twice in Melbourne, in 2013 and 2016. OA would have come to the party again earlier except for you know what. Its twice-delayed Ring, directed and designed by Chen Shi-Zheng, arrives in Brisbane for three cycles in December. But that’s not all. Melbourne Opera, a tiny company in comparison with OA, stages three cycles of Wagner’s tetralogy in the Victorian city of Bendigo in March/April. And the Sydney Symphony Orchestra starts its multi-year Ring project with concert performances of Das Rheingold on November 16 and 18 to be conducted by Simone Young. Which, of course, means it will be child’s play for deeply committed Wagnerites – are there any other kind? – to attend all three. 

Melbourne Opera

Die Walküre, Melbourne Opera, 2022. Photo © Robin Halls

It’s hard to argue there will be any bigger project in...