WSNSW e-news 30


Dear friends of the Wagner Society NSW 


Following up on the short note in the June Quarterly we are getting together details of the proposed excursion as follows:

Depart for Orange from Woollahra at noon on Friday 15 October, 

Return to Woollahra by 5.00pm on Sunday 17 October,

Staying for 2 nights at 4 star accommodation close to Orange.

Includes a four hour tour of the Brangayne vineyards, Cellar Door and famous Rhododendron gardens.

Final costs will depend on actual numbers going but if 6 couples go, accommodation for 2 nights will be about $450 per couple (incl breakfasts) ($340 single). Coach fare will be $140 each.

Meals are not included in the cost. There is a great selection of excellent fine dining venues in the area plus many other wineries that can be visited and other interesting tourist attractions nearby.

Once we have an idea of how many members (and friends) are interested we can finalise details and make bookings. It is peak season and places are starting to get booked out so we need your expressions of interest asap.

Please email or call Mike Day   0413 807 533.


— Alex Ross in conversation about his recent book ‘Wagnerism” with Dr David Larkin via zoom (WSNSW event, 6 June 2021)





Our recent zoom AGM was well attended. Details in the next Quarterly.


WSNSW — ARTICLE BY PETER BASSETT: How Tristan und Isolde Almost Went Down to Rio

Because Peter had to cancel his talk on 11 July, he has provided the attached article which he published in the London Wagner Society’s Journal.




The wonderful Melbourne vocal group The Parlour, lead by mezzo-soprano Karen van Spall and baritone Adam Miller, are presenting a unique show based upon the life and music of Hector Berlioz – told from the perspective of his second wife Marie Recio. Recio is played by actress Melanie Hillman, reading excerpts from diaries and letters, with songs by Berlioz, Schumann, Liszt and Wagner interspersed. Wagner Society’s Coady Green will be on piano. There are still a handful of tickets available for this – Tuesday 13th and Wednesday 14th at fortyfivedownstairs, 45 Flinders Lane. Tickets to both shows are live, but the concert will be live-streamed on Wednesday night so you may watch from the comfort of your home! We’re encouraging Wagner Society members to support this – the sort of concert that can be easily seen in European cities, but rarely seen here in Australia. And there is a significant cameo appearance by Wagner, with the inclusion of some very rarely-heard Wagner song repertoire! 

Livestream tickets $25. Book at:

— 25 July 2021, 6pm [AEST]: Richard Wagner Society (VIC)’s online interview of Mezzo Soprano Christa Meyer via zoom

From Miki Oikawa, President RWS:

Those of you who have been to Bayreuth in the last few years may have caught Christa singing the roles of Erda, Brangäne and other roles.  I had the pleasure of seeing her on stage and meeting her at the Wagner Societies’ dinner at Bayreuth in 2019. As the interviewer we have Sophie Burns, the young Australian mezzo who won our Young Artist Award in 2019 and went to the Bayreuth Festival that year.  

We can’t travel to Bayreuth this year, and we can’t have these two here in Australia right now – but we will get to hear these ladies speak live over Zoom.  I hope you will be able to join us.

This is a free event, and you are welcome to invite others who may be interested.  

Zoom Meeting: 

Meeting ID: 846 2835 4206     Passcode: W@gner2021

More information on the flyer attached.

Here is a little promo video of Christa as Brangäne at Bayreuth in 2015:

— 26 July – 24 August 2021: 
Reminder about Bayreuth Festival 2021 On DG Stage


The Bayreuth Festival on DG Stage includes the opening premiere of Tcherniakov’s ‘Der Fliegende Holländer’ and Castorf’s complete ‘Ring’ cycle.

Watch the Bayreuth Festival 2021 on Deutsche Grammophon’s online platform DG Stage this summer. A year ago Deutsche Grammophon’s first-ever virtual Bayreuth Festival set benchmark standards for online music streaming and this year’s programme is even more ambitious, offering unprecedented access to one of the greatest of all musical experiences. Between 26 July and 24 August 2021 DG Stage will present ten different current and recently performed festival productions, encompassing all of Wagner’s mature music dramas from the festival stage, including the opening premiere of Dmitri Tcherniakov’s new staging of Der Fliegende Holländer.

Thanks to Deutsche Grammophon’s collaboration with the Bayreuth Festival and the Society of Friends of Bayreuth all the broadcasts, except the exclusive premiere of Der Fliegende Holländer, will be available free of charge. Each production from the Bayreuth catalogue will remain available to registered viewers for 48 hours after its initial broadcast.

Exclusive online broadcast of Der Fliegende Holländer

DG Stage is delighted to present the exclusive online broadcast of Dmitri Tcherniakov’s new staging of Der Fliegende Holländer (27 July) which will be available for five days at a pay-per-view price of €9.90. The Russian director is making his Bayreuth debut, as is Ukrainian conductor Oksana Lyniv, who will be the first woman to take to the podium in the Bayreuth Festival’s long history.

Other highlights from the Bayreuth Festival 2021 on DG Stage include Frank Castorf’s provocative production of Der Ring des Nibelungen (30 July, 6, 15 and 21 August); Barrie Kosky’s “production of enormous insight and great quality” (Opera News) of Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg for the 2017 Festival (1 and 24 August); Tobias Kratzer’s “entertainingly transgressive” (Los Angeles Times) 2019 production of Tannhäuser (2 and 23 August); Tristan und Isolde (9 Aug) staged by the composer’s great-granddaughter Katharina Wagner in 2015; and Uwe Eric Laufenberg’s “sublime and provocative” (The New York Times) 2016 production of Parsifal (10 August).

“I am delighted that Deutsche Grammophon and the Bayreuth Festival are adding a streaming initiative on DG Stage to their long-standing partnership for the second time,” noted Katharina Wagner, Director of the Bayreuth Festival, “Last year’s streaming offerings were the first and also the only opportunity for a broad audience to be up close and personal in Bayreuth. In addition to the live experience in the Festspielhaus, I am very grateful to Deutsche Grammophon that the international Wagner community will be able to follow the current productions and a major new production in the Festspielhaus digitally, in particular during this difficult yet very special year.”

“The first virtual Bayreuth Festival was a tremendous success”

“The first virtual Bayreuth Festival was a tremendous success,” added Dr Clemens Trautmann, President Deutsche Grammophon. “We’re thrilled this year to present Dmitri Tcherniakov’s brand-new staging of Der Fliegende Holländer from the 2021 Festival and all of Wagner’s music dramas in their current Bayreuth productions, as sadly not all Wagnerians can travel or be accommodated with tickets. Wagner himself expressed the wish that friends of his art should have free access to Bayreuth performances, and our close collaboration with the Festival and the Society of Friends – which is in turn supported by the commitment of Siemens, partner of DG Stage – puts us in the exceptional position of being able to comply with his wish for all archived productions in this very special year.”

Bayreuth Festival 2021

26 July    Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg (Kosky/Jordan)
27 July    Der Fliegende Holländer (Tcherniakov/Lyniv)
30 July    Der Ring des Nibelungen: Das Rheingold (Castorf/Janowski)
31 July    Lohengrin (Sharon/Thielemann)
2 August Tannhäuser (Kratzer/Gergiev)
6 August Der Ring des Nibelungen: Die Walküre (Castorf/Janowski)
9 August Tristan und Isolde (K. Wagner/Thielemann)
10 August Parsifal (Laufenberg/Haenchen)
15 August Der Ring des Nibelungen: Siegfried (Castorf/Janowski)
21 August Der Ring des Nibelungen: Götterdämmerung (Castorf/Janowski)
23 August Tannhäuser (Kratzer/Gergiev)
24 August Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg (Kosky/Jordan)

For further information click here.


— Christian Schütte’s interview – in German – of Okka von der Damerau, on the Verband’s YouTube channel (7 July 2021)

Okka was the 2006 recipient of the Verband’s President’s prize. 

With warm regards from the President and Committee of Wagner Society in NSW