Anya17 Performed in Romania

RNCM sopranos Amy Webber and Andrea Tweedale, and bass Thomas Hopkinson travelled to Romania last week to re-stage the award-winning Anya17 on the eve of European Anti-Trafficking Day.

Written by Adam Gorb (Head of the School of Composition at the RNCM) and librettist Ben Kaye, Anya17 exposes the desperate plight of the estimated 700,000 women and young girls who are trafficked into the EU every year. The Romanian première, which took place at the Philmonic Hall, Timişoara on Thursday 17 October, was directed by Caroline Clegg and conducted by Mihaela Sylvia Roşca.

Talking of the experience, Amy, the RNCM’s SU President who sang the role of Elena, said: ‘Performing Anya17 in Romania, where more women and children are trafficked than any other country, was extremely poignant. For me it brought a deeper level of emotional engagement, and I found the whole experience very powerful. The Hall was full of Anti-Human Trafficking supporters and charities, so everyone who was there, both on and off stage, was fighting for the same thing. The applause at the end said more than just ‘what a great performance’; it said ‘let us continue to fight.’ What more of a thrill could a performer want: to be involved in something that is an art form and a campaign for change.’

Human Trafficking is a secretive £20,000,000,000 industry, second only in scope to the drugs trade. It is believed that Romania provides a higher percentage of Human Trafficking victims to the EU than any other country. Last year, Anya17 was awarded a Human Trafficking Foundation Media Award for Best Stage or Film Production Dealing with Human Trafficking. It is supported by 11 national and international NGOs and bodies, including The United Nations, and was made possible thanks to awards from Arts Council England/British Council and the RNCM.

21 October 2013