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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Media Contact:
Meggy Cheng
Director of Marketing
Tel: (852) 2721 9035
Email: meggy.cheng@hkphil.org

The Grand Finale of HK Phil’s journey through Wagner’s epic
Ring Cycle: Part IV Götterdämmerung (18 & 21 January 2018)

5-12-2017

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[5 December 2017, Hong Kong] The internationally and locally acclaimed performance of Wagner’s complete Ring Cycle given by the Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra (HK Phil), reaches its fourth and last part - Götterdämmerung - on 18 and 21 January 2018 at the Hong Kong Cultural Centre Concert Hall. Once again, the HK Phil’s Music Director Jaap van Zweden conducts the performances and is joined by a cast of world-renowned Wagnerian singers and outstanding choruses.

Michelle DeYoung - in Das Rheingold in 2015 and Die Walküre in 2016 – returns for this opera in the role of Waltraute. Other great Wagnerian singers in the cast are Daniel Brenna as Siegfried, Gun-Brit Barkmin as Brünnhilde, Shenyang as Gunther, Amanda Majeski as Gutrune, Peter Kálmán as Alberich and Eric Halfvarson as Hagen.

Götterdämmerung is the only part of the Ring Cycle to include a chorus. Eberhard Friedrich, the Chorus Master of the Bayreuth Festival and the Hamburg State Opera, will lead the Bamberg Symphony Chorus, the State Choir Latvija, and members of the Hong Kong Philharmonic Chorus in these performances.

The first-ever opera-in-concert performance of Wagner’s epic Ring Cycle in Hong Kong, this four-year journey is also the first to be recorded and released on CD by an orchestra from Hong Kong or Mainland China. Released on the Naxos label, the previous parts have been a huge success with audiences and critics alike. The live recordings of the Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra Wagner’s Ring Cycle Parts one Das Rheingold, two Die Walküre and three Siegfried are now available on CD/Blu-Ray in local record stores and at our Götterdämmerung opera-in-concerts.

The final part of the Ring is a thrilling and breath-taking musical spectacle. The huge orchestra, the all-star Wagnerian cast, and the gigantic chorus all promise a magnificent culmination to this once-in-a-lifetime event for the Hong Kong audience.

Performance length is approximately 6 hours including two intervals. Ticket holders are welcome to pre-order refreshments for the concert intervals at shop.hkphil.org before 9 Jan 2018.

Jaap Essentials: The Ring Cycle Part 4: Götterdämmerung will be held on 18 January 2018 (Thu) at 6PM & 21 January 2018 (Sun) at 3PM in the Hong Kong Cultural Centre Concert Hall. Ticket prices: HK1,080, $880, $580, $380 are now available at URBTIX. For enquiries, please call +852 2721 2332 or visit www.hkphil.org

International Acclaims for the Ring

"A Ring from Hong Kong to take on the world"
--- Gramophone

"This atmospheric Walküre, the second part of the Ring, is evidence of van Zweden's success in dramatically raising standards at Hong Kong"
--- The Times

The HK Phil “is always utterly secure and ever responsive to Van Zweden’s fine-grained control. There’s never a shortage of lustre or refinement…”
--- The Guardian

 “Siegfried offers a good, all-round performance. The scene is set for a successful conclusion of the Hong Kong Ring next year.”
--- Financial Times

On the Fringe of the Ring
To celebrate the final stage of the epic journey of the Ring, the HK Phil has prepared a series of Ring activities for fans to savour in and beyond the concert!

 

GÖTTERDÄMMERUNG DISCOVERY DAY
13 JAN 2018 (Sat)
Hong Kong Cultural Centre
The Discovery Day provides activities to deepen your exploration of the Ring. The highlight of the day is Symposium: Inside Götterdämmerung held by Sue Elliott (The Royal Conservatory of Music, Toronto, Canada), an expert of Wagner’s works. Audiences can also enjoy an open rehearsal, a demonstration of Wagnerian musical instruments, an exhibition and more.
Admission is free but registration is necessary for some activities.
Details: www.hkphil.org/ring2018events

A GUIDE THROUGH THE RING
Join us for an extensive and fun guide through Wagner’s mammoth opera cycle, including an interactive Facebook Live with Wagner experts and a podcast with Sue Elliott, all on our Facebook! Follow us on www.facebook.com/HKPhil.
Online PODCAST will be available in Jan 2018 at www.hkphil.org/ring2018podcast

HK PHIL COMPOSERS WORKSHOP – BEYOND THE RING
JAN – MAR 2018
A composer workshop for emerging composers! Selected candidates will participate in a series of activities and have the HK Phil rehearse their work at a public workshop.
Application deadline: 15 DEC 2017 (Fri)
Details: www.hkphil.org/composersworkshop2018

VOCAL MASTERCLASS
JAN 2018
Masterclass by the main cast from Götterdämmerung.
Details: www.hkphil.org/ring2018events

THE NIBELUNGS – KRIEMHILD’S REVENGE FILM SCREENING
(Restored version, Premiere in Hong Kong)
Goethe-Institut Hongkong Presents
14 JAN 2018 (Sun), 2:50pm
UA Cine Times
Tickets available now
www.uacinemas.com.hk


About Götterdämmerung
The third part of the Ring Cycle - Siegfried – ended with our hero, Siegfried, who had taken the Ring from the giants, rescuing Brünnhilde from a mountaintop where she had been surrounded by a wall of fire, Götterdämmerung begins with the three Norns weaving the rope of Destiny, singing of the future and predicting the fall of the gods. Siegfried and Brünnhilde declare their mutual love before Siegfried takes off in search of new adventures. He comes across the Hall of the Gibichungs where Gunther and his sister, Gutrune, plot to break Siegfried from Brünnhilde’s love and administer a love potion to divert their affections to the two Gibichungs. As the gods, humans and dwarfs fight over the Ring of Power, Siegfried and Brunnhilde find an unexpected turn in their fates. At the end, the great hall of the gods, Valhalla, is destroyed and the race of gods is no more.

Artists
Jaap van Zweden, conductor [full biography]
Jaap van Zweden has risen rapidly in the past decade to become one of today’s most distinguished conductors. Starting with the 2018/19 season, he will be the Music Director of the New York Philharmonic. He has been the Music Director of the Dallas Symphony Orchestra since 2008, and the Music Director of the Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra since 2012. Van Zweden was named Musical America's 2012 Conductor of the Year. Born in Amsterdam, van Zweden was the youngest ever concertmaster of the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra. He began his conducting career in 1995. 

Gun-Brit Barkmin, as Brünnhilde [full biography]
The German-born soprano Gun-Brit Barkmin is noted for her exciting portrayals of some of opera’s most complex leading ladies and has a strong association with the repertoire of Richard Strauss including Salome, Chrysothemis (Elektra) and Ariadne (Ariadne auf Naxos). Boasting an impressively diverse repertoire, she has appeared as Jenůfa at Komische Oper Berlin, Regan in Reimann’s Lear at Salzburg Festival, and Elena in the world premiere of Sotelo’s El Público at Teatro Real Madrid.

Daniel Brenna, as Siegfried [full biography]
American tenor Daniel Brenna is considered one of the youngest and most convincing Siegfrieds around. His Siegfried has been much celebrated at the Washington National Opera, Longborough Festival Opera, Stuttgart State Opera, the Wagner Days Budapest and the Odense Philharmonic Orchestra. Brenna made his successful debut at the Metropolitan Opera House as Alwa in Alban Berg’s Lulu in 2015 and returned as Laca in Jenůfa in 2016.

ShenYang, as Gunther [full biography]
Chinese bass-baritone Shenyang is celebrated for his distinguished artistry on the world’s eminent concert and opera stages. He has performed in many operas’ leading roles including The Magic Flute at the Metropolitan Opera and a new production of Don Giovanni conducted by Louis Langrée. His dedication to the great concert repertoire has yielded acclaimed performances with Yu Long and both the China Philharmonic and Shanghai Symphony orchestras, as well as Edo de Waart and the Hong Kong Philharmonic.    

Eric Halfvarson, as Hagen [full biography]
Internationally celebrated American bass Eric Halfvarson is one of today's foremost interpreters of many of the darkest Verdi and Wagner roles. A regular guest artist in many of the world’s foremost opera houses, he will sing Hagen in Götterdämmerung at Wiener Staatsoper, Daland in Wagner's Der Fliegende Holländer at Bergen National Opera in Norway, and The General in a new production of Prokofiev's The Gambler at Opera Vlaanderen in Belgium in this season.

Amanda Majeski, as Gutrune [full biography]
American lyric soprano Amanda Majeski is garnering critical acclaim for a voice of “silvery beauty” (Musical America). This season she plays two Wagner roles: Eva in Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg at the National Centre for the Performing Arts in Beijing and Gutrune in Götterdämmerung with the HK Phil. Highlights of last season included singing Beethoven’s ninth symphony, with Gustavo Dudamel and the LA Phil, as well as the Countess in Mozart’s Le nozze di Figaro at Washington National Opera.

Michelle DeYoung, as Waltraute [full biography]
Multi-GRAMMY® award-winner Michelle DeYoung is a regular performer at the Metropolitan Opera, Lyric Opera of Chicago, Teatro alla Scala and Theater Basel. She has also worked regularly with the Chicago Symphony, New York Philharmonic, Vienna Philharmonic and Royal Concertgebouw orchestra. In the 17/18 season, she makes her debut at the English National Opera as Amneris in a new production of Aida.

Peter Kálmán, as Alberich [full biography]
Hungarian bass-baritone Peter Kálmán is becoming widely known for his highly engaging character portrayals. In 2015 he gave a highly acclaimed role debut as Alberich in concert performances of Das Rheingold at Müpa Concert Hall in Budapest under Adam Fischer. He has since returned to Müpa to reprise Alberich in Das Rheingold, Siegfried and Götterdämmerung.


Jaap Essentials: The Ring Cycle Part 4: Götterdämmerung
18 & 21 | 1 | 2018
THU 6PM & SUN 3PM
Hong Kong Cultural Centre Concert Hall
HK $1,080 $880 $580 $380
Tickets are now available at URBTIX
For aged 6 and above

Artists
Jaap van Zweden

Conductor

Gun-Brit Barkmin

as Brünnhilde

Daniel Brenna

as Siegfried

ShenYang

as Gunther

Eric Halfvarson

as Hagen

Amanda Majeski

as Gutrune

Michelle DeYoung

as Waltraute

Peter Kálmán

as Alberich

Bamberg Symphony Chorus

Hong Kong Philharmonic Chorus

State Choir Latvija


Click the thumbnails to download press photos

Jaap van Zweden_3909_(c) Cheung Chi Wai

Gun-Brit Barkmin as Brunnhilde_(c) Florian Kalotay

Jaap van Zweden
Photo Credit: Cheung Chi Wai
Gun-Brit Barkmin as Brünnhilde
Photo Credit: Florian Kalotay
Daniel Brenna as Siegfried
Photo Credit: Christine Hoeflmayr


SHEN Yang as Gunther_(c) Marco Guerra

ShenYang as Gunther
Photo Credit: Marco Guerra


Eric Halfvarson as Hagen
Photo Credit: Lisa Kohler
Amanda Majeski as Gutrune
Photo Credit: Fay Fox

Michelle DeYoung as Waltraute

Peter Kalman as Alberich_(c) Miklos Deri

 

Michelle DeYoung as Waltraute
Photo Credit: Kristin Hoebermann
Peter Kálmán as Alberich
Photo Credit: Miklos Deri
 
     
Jaap and the HK Phil in Siegfried 201701  
Jaap and the HK Phil’s Siegfried
Photo Credit: Cheung Wai Lok/HK Phil
State Choir Latvija
Photo Credit: Reinis Hofmanis

 


Programme

WAGNER

Götterdämmerung




Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra
Music Director: Jaap van Zweden
Principal Guest Conductor: Yu Long

The Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra (HK Phil) is recognised as Asia’s foremost classical orchestra. Presenting more than 150 concerts over a 44-week season, the HK Phil attracts more than 200,000 music lovers annually.

Jaap van Zweden, one of today’s most sought-after conductors, has been the orchestra’s Music Director since the 2012/13 concert season, a position he will continue to hold until 2022. Maestro van Zweden will be the next Music Director of the New York Philharmonic from the 2018/19 season.

Yu Long was appointed Principal Guest Conductor with the HK Phil for a three-year period commencing with the 2015/16 season.

Under the dynamic leadership of Music Director Jaap van Zweden, the HK Phil has attained new heights of artistic excellence, garnering international critical acclaim.

Following on from the success of the European tour which included a filmed concert from Vienna’s Musikverein, the HK Phil has toured extensively within the mainland China. In celebration of the 20th anniversary of the establishment of the HKSAR, and with support of the Hong Kong Economic and Trade Offices, the orchestra recently performed in Seoul, Osaka, Singapore, Melbourne and at the Sydney Opera House.

Jaap, the HK Phil, and a superb casts of soloists, have presented concert performances and recordings of the first three operas from Richard Wagner’s epic Ring cycle. These have been enthusiastically endorsed by both audiences and critics at home and abroad, and in recognition of their quality, the orchestra and Jaap have been invited to perform Wagner’s Die Walküre in staged performances at the Beijing Music Festival this October in a co-production with the Salzburg Easter Festival.

Conductors and soloists who have recently, or shortly will have, performed with the orchestra include Vladimir Ashkenazy, Charles Dutoit, Christoph Eschenbach, Matthias Goerne, Stephen Hough, Lang Lang, Yo-Yo Ma, Ning Feng and Yuja Wang.

The HK Phil promotes the work of Hong Kong and Chinese composers through an active commissioning programme, and has released recordings on the Naxos label featuring Tan Dun and Bright Sheng, each conducting their own compositions. Its acclaimed education and community engagement programmes in schools, hospital and outdoor space, bring music into the hearts of tens of thousands of children and families every year.

The Swire Group has been the Principal Patron of the HK Phil since 2006. Through this sponsorship, which is the largest in the orchestra’s history, Swire endeavours to promote artistic excellence, foster access to classical music and stimulate cultural participation in Hong Kong, and to enhance Hong Kong’s reputation as one of the great cities of the world.

Thanks to a significant subsidy from the Hong Kong Government and long-term funding from Principal Patron Swire, the Hong Kong Jockey Club Charities Trust and other supporters, the HK Phil now boasts a full-time annual schedule of core classical repertoire and innovative popular programming, extensive education and community programmes, and collaborations with, among others, Opera Hong Kong and the Hong Kong Arts Festival.

Originally called the Sino-British Orchestra, it was renamed the Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra in 1957 and became fully professional in 1974. The HK Phil is a registered charitable organisation.


The Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra is financially supported by the Government of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region and is Venue Partner of the Hong Kong Cultural Centre.
SWIRE is the Principal Patron of the Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra.