Opera Australia will perform at Uluru for the very first time in November, the company teaming up with Voyages Indigenous Tourism Australia to bring some of its star performers – including soprano Lorina Gore and tenor Diego Torre – to the heart of Australia for a one-off concert.
Against the backdrop of Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park and Bruce Munro’s installation Field of Light Uluru, sopranos Lorina Gore, Natalie Aroyan, mezzo-soprano Angela Hogan, tenor Diego Torre and baritone Haotian Qi will join a chamber orchestra conducted by Tahu Matheson to perform a concert of opera’s most popular songs, arias and duets as the sun sets.
Soprano Lorina Gore at Uluru. Photo supplied
“It’s so exciting,” Gore told Limelight, having seen Uluru for the first time this year when she went there for a photo shoot ahead of the concert. “It’s just really breath-taking – the natural beauty of that place – and obviously it’s a very important spiritual landmark for the Indigenous community there.”
“There’s a lot of flies during the day, but it’s amazing because as soon as the sun goes down they all disappear and it’s really quiet,” she says. “It’s like this feeling that once the sun goes down everything is really quiet and still and peaceful – it’s really magical.”
The concert itself will take place as night falls and the Field of Light – an installation of 50,00 glass spheres that opened at Ayers Rock Resort in 2016 and has since been extended to 2020 – lights up the desert. “Hopefully people won’t be too distracted!” Gore laughs. “The sunset – and also sunrise – is really spectacular. There are so many different colours in the sky, and it seems like it changes every minute.”
Gore and the other soloists will perform works including the Habanera from Bizet’s Carmen, the famous duets from both The Pearlfishers and Delibes’ Lakmé, Nessun Dorma from Puccini’s Turandot and E lucevan le stelle from Tosca.
Lorina Gore in the Field of Light. Photo supplied
“It’s an extraordinary place to be and to have this sort of music – the most popular arias and duets in the repertoire sung by really great singers – will be a really unique experience,” Opera Australia Artistic Director Lyndon Terracini told Limelight. “The site itself is something that you can’t experience anywhere else in the world, so to be able to do a concert in that situation is really special.”
“This extraordinary performance will be a true feast for the senses, combining one of the most iconic Australian landscapes at sunset with Opera Australia’s awe-inspiring music and the magic of Field of Light Uluru,” said Grant Hunt, CEO of Voyages. “We know that our guests are drawn time and again to the magic of Uluru, and that they want to engage in a range of experiences that allow them to gain a deeper enjoyment of the destination, which is why we have worked hard to enable Opera Australia to perform here in the heart of Australia.”
“It’s a very special privilege to be asked to perform there,” says Gore. “It’s one of those once in a lifetime opportunities.”
Clarification: Opera Australia has previously sent singers to a private, indoor, invitation only function at Uluru, however this will be the first public Opera Australia performance at Uluru.
Opera Australia and Voyages’ Opera Gala at Uluru takes place on November 2