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August 27, 1987| Arts and entertainment reports from The Times, national and international news services and the nation's press

Soon, coming direct from Moscow, will be "Samantha Smith: The Opera." That's what Komsomolskaya Pravda, the Soviet Union's youth newspaper, reported in Tuesday's edition. Smith, who wrote former Soviet leader Yuri Andropov a letter in 1982 expressing concern about nuclear war between the superpowers, was killed in a plane crash in 1985. She is remembered as a heroine in the Soviet Union, which is why she's the subject of a new book and an opera presently being written by Soviet composer Mikhail Ziv. Wrote Pravda at the time of Smith's death: "Samantha represented America--but not all of America, only the best and most peaceful part."

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