Opera Scotland

Siegfried 2018Edinburgh International Festival

Read more about the opera Siegfried

The operatic offering at the 2018 Edinburgh International Festival consists of three fully staged productions imported from leading French companies. There are also two concert performances.

In recent years we have heard several of Rossini's less frequently performed operas. Now we can see, together for the first time here, his two most popular comic masterpieces. The Barber of Seville is presented by Le Théâtre des Champs-Elysées, on their first visit from Paris and Cenerentola by the familiar and welcome Opéra de Lyon.

In addition, John Gay's Beggar's Opera is to be performed by the Théâtre des Bouffes du Nord, from Paris, who have a substantial residency at the Festival. William Christie leads the musical side of this multinational coproduction.

The third instalment of Wagner's Ring, Siegfried is being performed in the Usher Hall. Sir Mark Elder conducts the Hallé; the all-star cast includes Simon O'Neill (Siegfried), Christine Goerke (Brünnhilde) and Iain Paterson (Wanderer).

There is also a concert performance of Humperdinck's Hansel and Gretel, to be given by the RSNO under Sir Andrew Davis. Elizabeth DeShong (Hansel) and Laura Wilde (Gretel) lead the cast.

Two important oratorios will also be given in the Usher Hall. The Dunedin Consort perform Handel's mighty Samson and the Festival's opening concert is Haydn's Creation.


When it was announced that the Festival would devote one evening over each of four successive years to the performance in concert form of the four elements of Wagner's Ring it seemed like a strange idea. Furthermore, each element was to be performed by a different company. Feelings remained mixed after the opening Rheingold. Valery Gergiev and his Mariinsky forces had toured their Ring widely, and a single performance of the prologue may have lacked a certain sense of excitement.

All doubts were swept away with Die Walküre. Sir Andrew Davis had been building his own Ring with his Chicago Opera. He had not worked with the RSNO regularly for some years, nor had they a huge recent acquaintance with the music. However the result was an unqualified triumph.

For 2018 we are promised the Hallé under Sir Mark Elder.  They have been playing a number of Wagner scores this way in Manchester and now have the music in their blood. The Brünnhilde from the USA and Siegfried from New Zealand return after last year's success. If Bryn Terfel's absence may perhaps be lamented,by some, the compensation could hardly be improved on. Glasgow-born Iain Paterson has now sung many leading Wagner roles in the world's great houses, though not previously on home territory. He is the first Scot to sing Wotan since the great David Ward back in the sixties and seventies. Enough said. 

Performance Cast

Siegfried son of Siegmund and Sieglinde

Simon O'Neill

Mime a Nibelung, Siegfried's fosterer

Gerhard Siegel

Wanderer Wotan in disguise

Iain Paterson

Alberich a Nibelung

Samuel Youn

Fafner disguised as a dragon

Clive Bayley


Malin Christensson

Erda mother of the Norns and Valkyries

Anna Larsson

Brünnhilde now a mortal

Christine Goerke

Performance DatesSiegfried 2018

Map List

Usher Hall | Edinburgh

8 Aug, 16.30

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