Derek Welton

© Simon Pauly


Upcoming Victorian Opera performance

Derek will be playing Orest in Elektra, September 2022. 

Last three major performances

  • Pandolfe in Massenet’s Cendrillon, Lyric Opera of Chicago, November 2018 – January 2019 
  • Klingsor in Wagner’s Parsifal, Bayreuth Festival, July – August 2018 
  • Der Pförtner in Korngold’s Das Wunder der Heliane, Deutsche Oper Berlin, March – April 2018


  • Bachelor of Arts (Linguistics / German), University of Melbourne
  • Master of Music / Master of Music Performance / Opera Course, Guildhall School of Music and Drama
  • Teachers: Anna Connolly (2003-2006), Raymond Connell (2006-2008), Janice Chapman (2008-2011), Michelle Wegwart (2011-present)

Age when you started singing

Started learning aged 20

Favourite opera

Parsifal (really!)

Favourite opera role to perform

Wotan in Das Rheingold

A fun fact not many people know about you

I can play the bagpipes!

Where’s the strangest place you’ve performed?

The Village Underground, a converted nightclub in London, singing various Poulenc songs including the brilliant song cycle Le bal masqué, with the City of London Sinfonia. The audience sat on cushions or stood, went to the back to get beers whenever they wanted, and I myself drank a beer throughout one of the songs in which I was supposed to be drunk.


"Perhaps the greatest revelation was Derek Welton’s dark, resonant singing and powerful physical presence as Klingsor. Clearly this young, British-trained Australian is destined for a big Wagnerian career."

Hugh Canning, Opera, October 2018

Wagner Parsifal, Bayreuth Festival, 1 August 2018

"Derek Welton, with the clarity of his text and his vocal tone, is one of the best performers of Klingsor of recent times."

Antonia Goldhammer, Bayerischer Rundfunk Klassik, 27 July 2018

Wagner Parsifal, Bayreuth Festival, 26 July 2018

Derek Welton as Klingsor in Bayreuth Festival's Parsifal © Enrico Nawrath

*The Richard Wagner Society Inc (Vic) is supporting the role of Klingsor.