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Published 21 April 2016

Göteborg Opera goes green for production of Wagner’s Ring Cycle

The Göteborg Opera will be staging a production of Richard Wagner’s Der Ring des Nibelungen, otherwise known as the Ring Cycle, from 2018 until 2021. A creative and highly challenging task in itself, the project hopes to break new ground in terms of its environmental ambitions. The project will run until 2021, which is the city of Gothenburg’s 400th anniversary, and will now be an active part of celebrations to mark the occasion. Collaboration between organisations, researchers and government agencies will make this project as stimulating as the dramatic production itself.

“Staging The Ring is a major artistic challenge that I’m delighted we’ve taken on. It is also entirely appropriate to use this major work to test how far we can reduce our impact on the environment, which is one of the key issues of our time. Wagner explores the majestic natural force of the elements and shows the consequences of using natural resources for personal power and gain,” says Stephen Langridge, Artistic Director, Opera/Drama. 

The four operas in The Ring Cycle – The Rhinegold, The Valkyrie, Siegfried and Twilight of the Gods – will be produced by a reputable international team between 2018 and 2021 (with premières in November each year). Stephen Langridge himself will be the director, with conductor Evan Rogister and set design by Alison Chitty. Several of the Göteborg Opera’s own soloists are seasoned Wagner performers and will be taking part in the project. In order to produce the work as sustainably as possible, the operas will not be staged at the same time. The audience will still be able to experience the entire Ring Cycle; the first three operas will be filmed and shown together with the final dramatic production in 2021.

Conductor Evan Rogister sends a greeting to the orchestra and the team

Breaking new environmental ground

Der Ring des Nibelungen is the most complex and ambitious musical drama work in the European tradition. The Göteborg Opera has long prioritised environmental issues and is now unique internationally with its EMAS registration, certification in accordance with ISO 14001 and Nordic Ecolabel (Svanen) certified restaurant. The Ring will be an innovative project, a test arena for taking environmental work even further, inspiring and sharing knowledge beyond the opera house as well.

600 sq metres of solar panels are installed on the Göteborg Opera’s roof in autumn 2014.
Tilo Stengel/GöteborgsOperan

“This is an extremely exciting project! The Göteborg Opera has a solid foundation from which to start a sound environmental performance. There are effective systems in place for measurement and follow-up and an extensive pool of knowledge. Sustainable, low-carbon and innovative solutions have been implemented in all parts of the organisation. We will no doubt come up against difficult, new challenges, but challenges are important in order for us to develop,” says Natalja Koniouchenkova, The Göteborg Opera’s environmental consultant.

The idea behind the Ring project is to encourage participation, share and exchange knowledge with others. The Göteborg Opera wants to work on a broad front with organisations, universities/research institutes, companies and government agencies, and also invite any interested members of the public to participate. The ambition is for this project to influence and contribute towards sustainable development in the Västra Götaland region, the rest of Sweden as well as internationally.

Sights set on Gothenburg’s 400th anniversary

2021 marks the city of Gothenburg’s 400th anniversary. Gothenburg will be celebrating this by working together to make the city an even better place. The Göteborg Opera’s project fits in extremely well with this vision and the plan is for it to play an active role in celebrations. 

“Gothenburg aims for its 400th anniversary to be a significant milestone in the city’s history. We are proud and pleased by the Göteborg Opera’s initiative and the fact that they want to be part of creating a sustainable footprint for the future,” says Therese Brusberg, Project Manager Göteborg 2021, Göteborg & Co.

Press contact and further information

Jenny Jernberg
+46 31-10 80 35 (shared Press number)

Tickets for the Ring Cycle are planned to be released in autumn 2017 or spring 2018.

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