30 Oct 2006
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.
Richard Morrison at the Grand Theatre, Leeds [Times Online, 30 October 2006]
No shingle, boats, pub or borough. Just one vast fishing net, hoisted like a mysterious communal totem in one of many darkly symbolic moments that punctuate Phyllida Lloyd’s staging of Britten’s masterpiece. Opera North’s new production must be one of the starkest yet conceived. The very people seem like flotsam and jetsam, adrift in a black sea. Even the pub singsong resembles a bunch of castaways huddled in a makeshift refuge.