07 Sep 2009
Actus Tragicus, review
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 Rupert Christiansen [The Telegraph, 7 September 2009]
The curtain rises on Actus Tragicus to show a stage filled with the cross-section of a modern tenement block. Slowly its 20 rooms fill with about 50 ordinary people engaged in a spectrum of human activities, from ironing and dressing to making love and contemplating suicide. Death is at hand: a black-suited figure prowls silently, and the naked body of the unresurrected Christ lies in the cellar.