01 Dec 2006
Welsh welcome for a Russian Wagner
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.
[Financial Times, 1 December 2006]
Just when questions are being raised, in the wake of the Litvinenko affair, about Russia’s trustworthiness as a superpower, along comes a 15-hour operatic allegory about the abuse of power – interpreted by a Russian company. Wagner’s Der Ring des Nibelungen, which is being performed this weekend in Cardiff, Wales, by St Petersburg’s Mariinsky Theatre, has nothing to say about Russian spies or nuclear contamination.