La Bohème premiered in 1896 and quickly ascended into the pantheon of the greatest operas of all time. The story of a poor seamstress, Mimi, and her bohemian friends is set in Paris around 1830, but Opera Australia’s production, directed by Gale Edwards, changes the setting to Berlin in the 1930s, with lavish costumes and set design that capture all the decadence and glamour of the Weimar Republic, with red velvet curtains, fishnets and boho threads. The opera is a famously heart-tugging show, with big melodies – ‘Musetta’s Waltz' in Act Two is the tune to listen out for, as well as the famous double-dose back-to-back arias 'Che Gelida Manina' and 'Mi Chiamano Mimi'.
Puccini’s tragic opera was also the inspiration for the musical Rent and a key influence on the film and musical Moulin Rouge. This production was created for Opera Australia's 2011 season and it has proved a popular hit. This season is the last go-around for it however, so don’t miss out. It’s the ideal entry point opera for newbies, and a classic production for aficionados too.
See what else is in the Opera Australia 2022 season.