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Radio 3 to broadcast complete Wagner Ring Cycle from the Royal Opera House

All 18 hours of Wagner's Ring Cycle will be broadcast across four days on BBC Radio 3, recorded at the Royal Opera House in 2018

Radio 3 to broadcast complete Wagner Ring Cycle from the Royal Opera House
Published: February 11, 2021 at 10:03 am

Wagner's complete Ring Cycle will be broadcast on BBC Radio 3 this month, recorded at London's Royal Opera House in 2018.


Over four evenings, BBC Radio 3 will broadcast all 18 hours of Wagner's epic opera cycle, with a cast including Nina Stemme as Brünnhilde, John Lundgren as Wotan and Sarah Connolly as Fricka, performing alongside the Orchestra of the Royal Opera House and music director Antonio Pappano. Tom Service will introduce each opera – Das Rhinegold, Die Walküre, Siegfried and Götterdämmerung – from when they were last staged at the Opera House in Keith Warner's critically acclaimed production.

Die Walküre, the second of these four operas, has since been released on DVD, which was awarded a five-star review by BBC Music Magazine. You can buy it from Amazon, Hive, WH Smith and Sheet Music Plus.

In preparation for the broadcast of The Ring Cycle, Radio 3 will also present Melissa Murray's The Last of the Volsungs, a dramatisation of the Icelandic saga about the origin and decline of the Völsung clan. It was this story that inspired Wagner to write the operas that make up The Ring Cycle. The Last of the Volsungs will be presented as part of the Drama on 3 slot on Sunday 14 February.

All programmes involved will be available on BBC Sounds for 30 days after their initial broadcast. Full listing information below.

The Ring Cycle will be broadcast on BBC Radio 3 from Wednesday 17 to Saturday 20 February.

Sunday 14 February
Drama on 3: The Last of the Volsungs

Sigurd: David Sturzaker
Regin: David Schofield
Gunnar: Carl Prekopp
Hod: Gerard McDermott
Gudrun: Lyndsey Marshal
Brynhild: Abbie Andrews
Sadhbh: Isabella Inchbald
Arvid: Clive Hayward
Alf: Rupert Holliday-Evans
Hjordis: Kath Weare
Warriors: Tayla Kovacevic-Ebong, Gary Duncan, Philip Bretherton

Wednesday 17 February
Opera on 3: Das Rheingold

Wotan: John Lundgren (Baritone)
Alberich: Johannes-Martin Kranzle (Baritone)
Loge: Alan Oke (Tenor)
Erda: Wiebke Lehmkuhl (Contralto)
Fricka: Sarah Connolly (Mezzo-soprano)
Freia: Lise Davidsen (Soprano)
Donner: Markus Eiche (Baritone)
Froh: Andrew Staples (Tenor)
Mime: Gerhard Siegel (Tenor)
Fasolt: Gunther Groissbock (Bass)
Fafner: Brindley Sherratt (Bass)
Woglinde: Lauren Fagan (Soprano)
Wellgunde: Christina Bock (Mezzo-soprano)
Flosshilde: Angela Simkin (Mezzo-soprano)
Royal Opera House Orchestra
Antonio Pappano (Conductor)

Thursday 18 February
Opera on 3: Die Walküre

Siegmund: Stuart Skelton (tenor)
Emily Magee (soprano)
Hunding: Ain Anger (bass)
Wotan: John Lundgren (baritone)
Brünnhilde: Nina Stemme (soprano)
Fricka: Sarah Connolly (soprano)
Gerhilde: Alwyn Mellor (soprano)
Ortlinde: Lise Davidsen (soprano)
Waltraute: Kai Rüütel (soprano)
Schwertleite: Claudia Huckle (contralto)
Helmwige: Maida Hundeling (soprano)
Siegrune: Catherine Carby (mezzo-soprano)
Grimgerde: Monika-Evelin Liiv (mezzo-soprano)
Rossweisse: Emma Carrington (mezzo-soprano)
Royal Opera House Orchestra
Antonio Pappano (conductor)

Friday 19 February
Opera on 3: Siegfried

Siegfried: Stefan Vinke (Tenor)
Brünnhilde: Nina Stemme (Soprano)
Mime: Gerhard Siegel (Tenor)
Wanderer: John Lundgren (Baritone)
Alberich: Johannes Martin Kränzle (Baritone)
Fafner: Brindley Sherratt (Bass)
Erda: Wiebke Lehmkuhl (Contralto)
Woodbird: Heather Engebretson (Soprano)
Royal Opera House Orchestra
Antonio Pappano (Conductor)

Saturday 20 February
Opera on 3: Götterdämmerung

Brünnhilde: Nina Stemme (soprano)
Siegfried: Stefan Vinke (tenor)
Alberich: Johannes Martin Kränzle (baritone)
Gunther: Markus Butter (baritone)
Gutrune: Emily Magee (soprano)
Hagen: Stephen Milling (bass)
Waltraute: Karen Cargill (mezzo-soprano)
First Norn: Claudia Huckle (contralto)
Second Norn: Irmgard Vilsmaier (soprano)
Third Norn: Lise Davidsen (soprano)
Woglinde: Lauren Fagan (soprano)
Weilgunde: Rachael Lloyd (mezzo-soprano)
Flosshilde: Angela Simkin (mezzo-soprano)
Royal Opera House Orchestra & Chorus
Antonio Pappano (conductor)


Lead image: Stuart Skelton as Siegmund and Emily Magee as Sieglinde in Die Walküre, The Royal Opera ©2018 ROH. Photograph by Bill Cooper


Freya ParrDigital Editor and Staff Writer, BBC Music Magazine

Freya Parr is BBC Music Magazine's Digital Editor and Staff Writer. She has also written for titles including the Guardian, Circus Journal, Frankie and Suitcase Magazine, and runs The Noiseletter, a fortnightly arts and culture publication. Freya's main areas of interest and research lie in 20th-century and contemporary music.

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