11 Dec 2006
Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg, Grand Théâtre, Geneva
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 Francis Carlin [Financial Times, 11 December 2006]
Hans Sachs’ concluding ode to German art means Wagner’s only “comic” opera has become a political hot potato. A producer who stages it with traditional medieval pomp is accused of ducking the issues raised by German nationalism; treating it as an anticipatory apologia of National Socialism looks like a cheap trick based on questionable hindsight.