28 Feb 2006
Shoe Box Memories Travel to the Opera Stage
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.
(Photo: Gerry Goodstein)
BY GARY SHAPIRO [NY Sun 28 February 2006]
"All this material haunted me for years," said poet Anna Rabinowitz, about finding a shoe box in her father's closet containing a small packet of photos and letters written in Polish and Yiddish. She was speaking at a panel discussion following the preview of a multimedia theater piece that brings those fragments to life. American Opera Projects presents its world premiere of "Darkling" tonight at the East 13th Street Theatre. "I wanted to find a way to retrieve these people, bring them back to life for a moment," she said about the people in the photos and referred to in letters. But Ms. Rabinowitz still knew few details about her parents' extended family members, nearly all of whom perished in the Holocaust.