06 Mar 2006
Sir John In Love, Coliseum, London
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.
By Edward Seckerson [The Independent, 6 March 2006]
Putting the "English" back into English National Opera is, in part, what the company should be doing, of course. And the first professional production of Vaughan Williams's Sir John in Love since 1958 might be considered a step in the right direction. Is the piece really worth reviving, though? And if so, doesn't flashing the words "includes the great British favourite 'Greensleeves'" across all the publicity smack just a little of desperation? Yes and no to both questions, I think.