05 Jul 2006
Fidelio, Glyndebourne Festival, Sussex
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 Richard Fairman [Financial Times, 4 July 2006]
Almost 200 years after its premiere, Beethoven’s opera seems as painfully relevant as ever. Deborah Warner’s 2001 production for Glyndebourne came too soon to transport this drama of prisoners held without trial to Guantánamo Bay, but it is still set in the present. Costumes and surroundings are unspecific enough to suggest that the events could be happening anywhere, but they are certainly happening now.