Bendigo to host Wagner's epic Ring Cycle opera marathon

One of the most ambitious and largest performing arts productions on the international stage Richard Wagner’s Ring Cycle is coming to Bendigo in 2023.

Mayor Cr Andrea Metcalf said this was the first time Ring Cycle had ever been staged in regional Australia and the City of Greater Bendigo was thrilled to exclusively secure this critically acclaimed performance blockbuster produced by Melbourne Opera.

“We are very excited to have been approached by Melbourne Opera to stage not only one of the most ambitious opera productions ever seen in Australia, but also rarely performed internationally because of its complexities and mammoth size in production terms,” Cr Metcalf said.

“Wagner’s Ring Cycle is an epic $5M production with a huge cast and crew of hundreds of Australian singers, musicians, creatives and technicians. Such a production has rarely been attempted in Australia, with only five productions spanning more than a century.

“This is the biggest production ever staged by Bendigo Venues & Events staff and we’ve secured this exclusive opportunity thanks to our incredible investment in world-class facilities.

“Bendigo’s Ring Cycle will be performed at our magnificent 900-seat Ulumbarra Theatre which was chosen because it is big enough to hold the show’s immense scenery set.

“This production will be top of the bucket list for opera fans and ‘Ring-nuts’ who travel the world to see this pinnacle of opera — a 15-hour epic journey performed over four nights, consisting of four individual operas  Das RheingoldDie WalküreSiegfried and Götterdämmerung

“At Ulumbarra, the audience will experience the Ring Cycle like never before as the theatre is so well designed that every seat is the best seat in the house, giving audiences access to a truly unique and intimate performance, immersed in the epic production featuring gods, giants, dragons and a 130-piece orchestra.

“Greater Bendigo enjoys an enviable reputation on Australia’s cultural map and this will no doubt drive tourism and attract significant visitors from around Australia and overseas.

“It is likely that each Ring Cycle will be performed over 10 days, encouraging longer stays which is fantastic news for our hotel accommodation, retail and hospitality sectors.

“Bendigo Venues & Events is still in the early stages of planning this magnificent production and tickets are not on sale yet, but it is likely we will be hosting three full Ring Cycles commencing March 24, 2023.”

Tickets are expected to go on sale in the next few weeks and Bendigo Venues & Events will make further announcements on these details soon.

On Sunday Feb 27 part 2 of The Ring Cycle, Die Walküre, will be performed for a one-show-only at Ulumbarra Theatre as a test run ahead of the full cycle next year. The performance starts at 2pm and tickets are $89 full, $84 concession, and $39 for a child.

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