04 Dec 2006
Antonio Pappano: Local hero
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: Sheila Rock)
For opera-lovers it's a great relief that Antonio Pappano, Italian but London-born, has just signed a new contract as Covent Garden's Musical Director. Anna Picard asks him about the highs - and occasional lows - of this high-pressure job
[Independent, 3 December 2006]
Antonio Pappano is famously the youngest conductor to have command of Covent Garden since 1955. Yet his was not the meteoric rise of popular fiction. Though small of stature, he cuts a powerful figure. There's bulk in those shoulders, and grit behind the affable pragmatism of a busy man. Were we to come to blows over the highs and lows of his four-year career at the Royal Opera House, I wouldn't fancy my chances.