The Writers' Ring Cycle

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Episodes

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01The Memory Of Gold20121016

A series of specially commissioned responses to The Ring from four of our foremost writers. Each writer has taken one of the four operas in the cycle as inspiration for a short new work. There are four different literary genres represented here too: a play, a short story, an essay and a poem.

In this first response the playwright and dramatist Timberlake Wertenbaker, author of the award-winning "Our Country's Good" and "Birds Alighting in a Field" takes the opening scene of Das Rheingold as her inspiration. Her play, "The Memory of Gold", stars Harriet Walter, Geraldine James and Siobhan Redmond and was recorded in front of an audience at the Linbury Theatre at the Royal Opera House.

The producer is Frank Stirling and it is a Unique production for BBC Radio 3.

02The Twins Of Whiting Bay20121018

'The Twins of Whiting Bay' continues the series in which four prominent writers respond to the four operas in The Ring with new works of their own. Award-winning novelist and poet, Jackie Kay reads her short story inspired by the tale of Siegmund and Sieglinde in Die Walkure. Set on the Isle of Arran, a place as steeped in folklore as any Scandinavian Saga. Here selkies are the local sprites: shapeshifters, who live as seals in the sea and shed their skins to become women on land. As the seas lap the shore, storm clouds gather... Recorded in front of an audience at The Linbury Theatre at the Royal Opera House.

The producer is Frank Stirling and it is a Unique production for BBC Radio 3.

03Siegfried: A Hero On Viagra20121021

Third in the series where four prominent writers respond to the operas in Wagner's Ring cycle with new works of their own.

In this editon, multiple award-winning novelist, Andrew O'Hagan, author of "Our Fathers" and "The Life and Opinions of Maf the Dog and of his Friend Marilyn Monroe" takes on Wagner's character Siegfried, in a polemical response to the opera.

Recorded in front of an audience at The Linbury Theatre at the Royal Opera House.

It is produced by Philippa Geering and is a Unique production for BBC Radio 3.

04 LASTThe Eighth Of April20121024

The final part of a series in which four prominent writers respond to the operas in Wagner's The Ring with new works of their own.

Award-winning poet, playwright and librettist, Glyn Maxwell performs a specially commissioned dramatic poem, which takes as inspiration the three Norns in Gotterdammerung as they face the demise of the gods as the Ring Cycle draws to a close.

Recorded in front of an audience at The Linbury Theatre at the Royal Opera House.

The producer is Frank Stirling and it is a Unique production for BBC Radio 3.