18 Jan 2010
Henze weekend, Barbican, London
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 Andrew Clark [Financial Times, 18 January 2010]
Having fallen from the public eye in Britain in recent years, Hans Werner Henze basked in the limelight of this two-day tribute involving the BBC Symphony Orchestra and the Frankfurt-based Ensemble Modern. With two substantial UK premieres, plus a cross-section of symphonic, piano and vocal music, the weekend did credit to everyone - not least the 83-year-old composer, looking frail but alert as he stood to acknowledge the hefty applause.