18 Aug 2005
Iolanta at Royal Albert Hall
Raphaela Papadakis seems to like ‘playing with fire’. After her acclaimed performance as the put-upon maid, Anna, in Independent Opera’s production of Šimon Voseček’s Beidermann and the Arsonists at Sadler’s Wells last year, she is currently rehearsing for the premiere this week of And London Burned, a new opera by Matt Rogers which has been commissioned by Temple Music Foundation to commemorate the 350th anniversary of The Great Fire of London.
Erica Jeal [The Guardian, 17 August 2005]
Double bills aren't what they used to be. Iolanta, Tchaikovsky's last, one-act opera, was conceived as the second part of an evening that would have begun nearly two hours earlier with his ballet The Nutcracker. Welsh National Opera's concert presentation, which has been touring on and off since June, paired it with only a few snippets from the ballet score - and the evening didn't exactly seem short.