This weekend Opera Philadelphia is bringing back a beloved classic to grace its stage- Puccini’s colorful and vibrant show “La Bohème.” The incredible opera first hit the stage in the City of Brotherly Love in 2012, the production was directed by David Livermore and was deemed a massive success. Now the show is back and it is going to be more stunning and awe-inspiring than ever.
According to the release, the production led by Musical Director Corrado Rovaris is drawing its inspirations from masterpieces from the treasured collections of the Barnes Foundation and the Philadelphia Museum of Art. “La Bohéme” will showcase the gorgeous works of art through vivid projections, and the line-up includes works from Renoir, Monet, Van Gogh, Toulouse-Lautrec and Cassatt. The set and the costumes will compliment the incredible art pieces beautifully, and audiences will truly see paintings come to life right before their eyes. If you were expecting to be stunned by the music, prepare to be blown away by the visual aesthetics- together the music and art are nothing short of astounding.
“La Bohème” has always been hailed as a masterpiece, the four-act opera is a tragic love story set in Paris in the 1830s. Two star-crossed lovers, Mimi and Rodolfo try to navigate the trials and tribulations of life while also trying to keep a roof over their own heads and food on the table. Rodolfo is a struggling artist, and Mimi happens upon his doorstep one night, the two have an immediate connection and begin a journey on a beautiful yet calamitous love affair.
“We are thrilled to welcome the return of this dramatic and imaginative production of Puccini’s beloved masterpiece La Bohème, providing a fitting conclusion to our 2018-2019 Season,” said David B. Devan, General Director & President of Opera Philadelphia in a release. “The incredible collections from the Barnes Foundation and the Philadelphia Museum of Art provide a rich patina that combine with the lush melodies of Puccini to create new interactions with both art forms. We see Renoir’s ‘Woman Sewing’ as Mimì sings of her job as a seamstress. Van Gogh’s beloved ‘Sunflowers’ blooms in time with the love of Mimì and Rodolfo, and when he famously buys her a bonnet, we see Renoir’s ‘Girl With Pink Bonnet.’ We are honored to bring this experience back to Philadelphia.”
Grand-prize winner at the Metropolitan Opera’s 2017 National Council auditions, Soprano Vanessa Vasquez will be making her company debut as the shy seamstress Mimì, opposite Evan LeRoy Johnson as Rodolfo. Baritone Troy Cook will be returning as Marcello (Cook was also in 2012’s incredible production), while Opera Philadelphia Emerging Artist Ashley Marie Robillard will take on the role of Marcello’s muse and sometimes girlfriend, Musetta. Other talented cast members include baritone Will Liverman, bass Peixin Chen and bass Kevin Burdette.
La Bohéme will run at the Academy of Music (240 S Broad St.) from April 26 through Sunday, May 5. For more information, showtimes and to purchase tickets visit operaphila.org.