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Bringing 'epic' to the high street four operas at a time

Following on from the success of our 2019 concert Siegfried GAFA are going three better bringing epic opera to the high street with Richard Wagner’s Ring Cycle in its four opera entirety. 

GAFA means connection in Samoan and GAFA arts collective creative director Sani Muliaumaseali'i, divines a syncretic vision for their concerts of Richard Wagner's music dramas Der Ring des Nibelungen in RINGafa the power of love of power .

RINGAFA will be performed at St Mary’s Church, Putney High Street, London, on Oct 30/ NOV 6/13/20, 2021. Following the runaway success of GAFA's 2019 concert Siegfried, the Wagner Blade (opera three of four in the Ring Cycle) they return with a world class cast and Stephen Anthony Brown and the Rosenau Sinfonia.

'As with all GAFA presentations I look for a cultural common' says creative director Sani Muliaumaseali'i whose past collaborations with the Rosenau Sinfonia embody this notion. Their semi staged presentation Messiah Pazifik (2017) which linked Handel's oratorio with the arrival of Christianity in Samoa and Sunday MASSive (2018) commemorating the centenary of the 1918 Pandemic with Requiem Masses by Verdi, Brahms and Elgar's Dream of Gerontius. Samoa lost 25% of its population when the flu arrived there on the HMS Talune.

'In RINGafa the connection is the mythology and the back and forth between love, power, sacrifice and corruption' says Muliaumaseali'i. 'RINGafa is a development from our Siegfried concert of 2019 where, like the Rhine finding it's way to the Pacific Ocean I intertwined aspects of Samoan culture into the narrative -- RINGafa will do the same'

Above: Sani Muliaumaseali'i as Siegfried wielding his sword 'Nothung' (here a Talavalu a traditional Samoan weapon)

Hannah Vaine-Aroha performs a traditional Samoan siva as Waldvögel.

‘With this quality of performance I would recommend going to any event by the GAFA Arts Collective. Long may they continue to perform’

Audience Club, Siegfried, 2019.

This will be the first time a Samoan arts entity will present this operatic masterwork. The talented cast of emerging and established Wagnerian singers hail from all parts of the globe. Among them are British opera sensation Nadine Benjamin MBE Sieglinde (ENO, Glyndebourne) Canadian powerhouse soprano Yannick Muriel Noah Brünnhilde, ( Deutsche Oper am Rhine, Staatsoper Hanover, Canadian Opera Company) New Zealand mezzo soprano Rhonda Browne as Erde (Longborough Festival Opera, Wagner Prize winner, New Zealand Opera) and Latvian born Bass baritone Pauls Putnins (Glyndebourne, English National Opera,) will gives us his acclaimed Wotan. All these artists are making their company debut in RINGafa. Sani Muliaumaseali'i, Tenor (Dutch National Opera, Royal Opera House, English National Opera) returns with fellow Samoan New Zealander Aivale Cole, Soprano (Sydney Opera House, Arcola Theatre, Western Australia Opera) as Siegfried and Wäldvogel respectively. Helden voiced Hong Kong national Freddie Tong, Baritone (Royal Opera House, English National Opera, Opera Hong Kong) returns to GAFA as Alberich. and Waltraute will be given by versatile Briton Sarah Sweeting, Mezzo soprano (Opera Australia, Opera Holland park, Melbourne opera) in her fourth appearance with GAFA and fellow Mezzo Julia Mintzer (Welsh National Opera, Washington National Opera, Dresden Semperoper). Further casting information can be found on the GAFA site.

Above: Sarah Sweeting as Erde 2019, returns as Waltraute

 The RINGafa concerts are a preview to a full production scheduled for 2022, the GAFA ARTS COLLECTIVE 10th anniversary.

Themes seen in RINGafa the power of love of power are poised for development into a full RING CYCLE production in 2022. The power sharing of Nordic and Pacific Gods, the proliferation of Giants, dwarves, deity and creature in both cultures is fertile nexus for creativity.

Above: Sani Muliaumaseali'i as Siegfried, Gweneth Ann Rand as Brünnhilde 2019.

'Outstanding performance by superb world class cast and amazing, vibrant and brilliant Rosenau Sinfonia Orchestra at every stage and on every level of the performance.'

Audience Club, Siegfried, 2019.

As we tentatively emerge from the limitations of the pandemic, reflections abound. Perhaps the world will be better at being the world? or perhaps and most likely, our power of love of power will get the better of us?

' Humanity has a short memory ' says Muliaumaseali'i ' but we cannot take anything for granted, The pandemic has taught that everything can be gone in an instant - dreams, careers, loved ones - LIFE. Covid is epic, and epic circumstances call for an epic response'. For Muliaumaseali'i and the GAFA arts collective, RINGafa is that response.

RINGafa, the power of love of power: Oct 30 & Nov 6/13/20 2021 St Mary's Church Putney London SW15 1SL For Cast, information and Tickets:

£40/£60/£80 available HERE

MEDIA ENQUIRIES: Fa'autu Talapusi



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