In 2018 we were honoured to host some distinguished guests …

Head Judge – Lisa Gasteen

Prior to taking the Chair of Practice Professor of Opera at the Queensland Conservatorium of Music, Griffith University in 2011, Lisa Gasteen had become one of the world’s most sought after interpreters of the dramatic German repertoire.

Best known for her performances of Brünnhilde, Isolde and Electra she was a regular guest at the major opera houses including Metropolitan Opera, New York; Royal Opera, Covent Garden; The Bastille, Paris; and the State Opera Companies of Vienna, Stuttgart and Berlin to name a few; and International Festivals including Bergen, Baden Baden, Tanglewood, Adelaide, Sydney, Perth, Melbourne and Brisbane.

In 1991 she came to international attention by winning The Cardiff Singer of the World Competition, and was appointed an Officer of the Order of Australia (AO) in 2006 for her services to the arts. In 2011 Lisa established The Lisa Gasteen National Opera School, located at the Queensland Conservatorium Griffith University in Brisbane, to help, mentor and develop the skills and progress of Australian operatic singers and répétiteurs.

Preliminary Judge – John Bolton Wood

A celebrated performer and the winner of five Green Room Awards, John Bolton Wood, who was awarded an AM for his services to Opera in 2009, was born in Sydney, and received his music education at the NSW Conservatorium of Music and the London Opera Centre. He made his UK debut at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden as Bosun in Benjamin Britten’s Billy Budd.

John returned to Australia in 1973 to sing the role of Roderick Usher in Larry Sitzky’s Fall of the House of Usher, the first full-scale production to be staged in the Opera Theatre, Sydney Opera House. Since then he has appeared with all the State Opera companies and with Opera Australia in a wide variety of roles.

In 2018, John sings Benoit and Alcindoro in La Bohème for Opera Australia’s Handa Opera on Sydney Harbour and Fritz Kothner in Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg Act III in a special gala concert with State Opera of South Australia.

Preliminary Judge – Liane Keegan

Liane’s international career has seen her singing in Opera, Concert and Oratorio. Roles include, Erda, First Norn and Waltraute in Der Ring des Niebelungen (Stuttgart, Berlin, Adelaide, Melbourne, London and Edinburgh); Ulrica, Ballo in Maschera Opera Australia; Mistress Quickly, Falstaff (Paris, Minnesota, Hagen); and Azucena, Il Trovatore ( Adelaide, Melbourne).

Liane is also a Mahler specialist and has performed all the works of Mahler. Since returning to Australia in 2012, Liane has sung as a regular soloist with Melbourne Symphony Orchestra and Victorian Opera.

Engagements this season include Mahler Rueckert Lieder and Bernstein Symphony 1 with Melbourne Symphony Orchestra, and Pelleas and Mellisande and William Tell with Victorian Opera.