It’s 16 years since Barrie Kosky, ratbag genius of ustralian theatre, left for Europe. In the intervening years, he has established an international reputation as an opera director, with around 40 audacious productions to his name – none of which have been seen at home.

The last mainstage opera the Melbourne-born director staged here was Alban Berg’s Wozzeckfor Opera Australia in 1999. But that is about to change, with three Kosky productions arriving in Australia in as many years. “It’s a bonanza!” he quips over the phone from Berlin, where he has been Artistic Director of the Komische Oper since 2012 – the first non-German to lead the famous Company.

Barrie Kosky’s production of Handel’s  Saul

First up, his rapturously received Glyndebourne production of Handel’s oratorio Saulis the centrepiece of this year’s Adelaide Festival. Then, in 2018, Opera Australia presents his version of Shostakovich’s The Nose, which premiered at London’s Royal Opera House last October. His phenomenally successful 2012 Komische Oper production of The Magic Fluteis due here in 2019.

“I am very happy because the three productions are so different,” says Kosky. “I’ve been away for nearly 17 years and...

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