Finding out that I was going to be recording the West Australian Symphony Orchestra’s concert performance of Tristan und Isoldefor ABC Classic was very exciting. I knew immediately that it was going to be a large challenge, and would involve a lot of time and hard work. But these opportunities don’t come around very often – and I knew that with conductor Asher Fisch, heldentenor Stuart Skelton as Tristan, soprano Gun-Brit Barkmin as Isolde, and all the other great singers involved, it was going to be a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.

Microphones record WASO’s Tristan und Isolde

I had a wonderful head start for Tristanbecause I had recorded Stuart’s recital album, Shining Knight, just a few months before – in the same hall, with the same orchestra and the same conductor. It was a terrific exercise in discovering what was needed to make Tristanwork. It was also a good opportunity to get to know Stuart, to see what he was like as a singer, and how to work with him. And it was very useful in terms of gaining the trust and goodwill of the orchestra and all...