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La Bohème Opera Review- By Nili Nathan
Fellini meets Puccini!In Koskys La Bohème, you can delete all the other versions you have seen from your mind. One of the most famous and beloved operas is a sensational production by LA Opera. Hurry to see it before it closes on October 6th. This was one of the best productions by LA Opera, and I highly recommend you catch it.
Often, it is the simple story that carries the most complex of emotional weight. Such is the case in director Barry Kosky’s marvelous melodrama. The story is about a man and a woman who fall in love and she is going to die. But this tear jerker will have you smiling along as you witness the characters falling in and out of love, almost simultaneously. Rudolfo (Saimir Pirgu) and Mimi (Marina Costa-Jackson) are the main love birds, followed by their friends, Marcello ( Kihun Yoon) and Musetta (Erica Petrocelli). Love borders on indifference. But as we see indifference is a self-preservation mechanism the two couples experience. This production was colorful and engaging. An enjoyable evening conducted by James Conlon and played beautifully by the LA Opera Orchestra.

LA Opera presents one of opera’s most beloved classics, Giacomo Puccini’s La Bohème, opening the 2019/20 season on September 14.
Conducted by James Conlon, the company’s Richard Seaver Music Director, this fresh take on Puccini’s classic is the creation of Barrie Kosky, one of Europe’s most inventive stage directors. Mr. Kosky first wowed Angelenos with his sold-out productions of The Magic Flute, in the animation-driven staging which returns later this season.

A not-completely-traditional production keeps the opera’s original 19th-century setting with a few surprises along the way, telling the story with raw emotional immediacy.
About the Opera
It’s 19th-century Paris, a world capital filled with bustling cafes, bold ideas and creative energy. Six struggling young artists dream of making it big and finding their perfect matches. Along the way, they learn to celebrate life for all that it’s worth.
A perennial audience favorite since its 1896 premiere, La Bohème sings to the romantic in all of us. It remains one of the most beloved and most frequently performed of all operas.
The Performers
Two gorgeous young international stars appear as the tragic lovers: soprano Marina Costa-Jackson in her LAO debut as Mimì and tenor Saimir Pirgu as Rodolfo. The cast also includes baritone Kihun Yoon as Marcello and bass-baritone Nicholas Brownlee as Colline; both are alumni of LAO’s Domingo-Colburn-Stein Young Artist Program. Three current members of that program are also featured: soprano Erica Petrocelli as Musetta, baritone Michael J. Hawk as Schaunard and tenor Robert Stahley (in his LAO debut) as Parpignol. Bass-baritone Patrick Blackwell completes the cast as Alcindoro.
The Creative Team
Barrie Kosky’s production of La Bohème was first seen in January 2019 at Berlin’s Komische Oper. The sets designed by Rufus Didwiszus are inspired by antique photography and the brightly colored costumes are designed by Victoria Behr. Marco Philipp will recreate the original lighting designs of Alessandro Carletti. The associate stage director is Katharina Fritsch. Grant Gerson directs the LA Opera Chorus and Fernando Malvar-Ruiz directs the Los Angeles Children’s Chorus, one of the nation’s leading youth choral institutions.
Performance Dates and Times
There will be six performances of La Bohème presented by LA Opera at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion (135 North Grand Avenue, Los Angeles CA 90012)

  • Saturday, September 14 at 6pm (opening night Opera Ball)
  • Sunday, September 22 at 2pm
  • Wednesday, September 25 at 7:30pm (newcomer night)
  • Saturday, September 28 at 7:30pm (Hispanics for LA Opera night / Aria (under 40) night)
  • Wednesday, October 2 at 7:30pm
  • Sunday, October 6 at 2pm

Tickets are on sale now. Tickets begin at $24 and can be purchased online at, by phone at 213.972.8001, or in person at the LA Opera box office at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion (135 N. Grand Avenue, Los Angeles CA 90012). For disability access, call 213.972.0777 or email LA Opera Website
September 28 Simulcasts 
On Saturday, September 28, La Bohème will be broadcast live in high-definition video directly from the stage at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion to giant outdoor screens set up in Columbia Regional Park in Torrance and the Santa Monica Pier. These events are free and open to all. Click on the following links to learn more about Opera at the Beach and Opera in the Park.

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