17 Oct 2007
Seattle Opera’s mythic interpretation is a knockout.
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 © Seattle Opera Photo
By Gavin Borchert [Seattle Weekly, 17 October 2007]
In Seattle Opera's Iphigenia in Tauris, composer Christoph Willibald Gluck and director Stephen Wadsworth spin out a slender plot into two of the most absorbing hours of opera in memory. The story is taken from Euripides, and in a brief but breathtaking prologue, the title character is rescued from the sacrificial altar by Diana, the two of them silently whooshing into the air. As the opera opens, Iphigenia has become a priestess in far-off Tauris. Charged with the killing of two prisoners—ironically ordered to inflict upon them the fate she escaped—she agonizes over the deed until her connection to them is revealed.