Drama and heat aside it was an impressive night.

Russia’s Mariinsky Opera from St Petersburg gave a fascinating and faultless rendition of Wagner’s Das Rheingold, that kept me hooked from start to finish.

The cast created the drama associated with opera, creating steadily rising tension that was expertly executed with the orchestra. The strings were most memorable and the trombones and horns added momentum at various points throughout.

The singers performed with exhilarating energy and confidence across the board.

And Usher Hall makes, rarely experience outside of The Royal Opera House.

The night was enhanced by the fireworks that greeted me from the Royal Edinburgh Military Tattoo when I left the building.

Overall a great experience and introduction to the Edinburgh International Festival.

Usher Hall, Lothian Road, Edinburgh EH1 2EA.