Nearly 120 years after Puccini wrote La Bohéme, it remains one of the world’s most favourite operas, now Opera Australia (OA) returns to Melbourne’s State Theatre from 3 May 2016, with the first of three productions in its Autumn season.
In 2011 Gale Edwards transported La Bohème (The Bohemians) from the City of Lights to the shimmering darkness of Weimar Berlin, captivating audiences with the startling collision of cabaret excess and extreme poverty.
The first production Artistic Director Lyndon Terracini commissioned at OA returns to Melbourne, bringing with it two of opera’s biggest names – Lianna Haroutounian (Mimì) making her Melbourne debut and Gianluca Terranova (Rodolfo).
“I fell in love with Melbourne when I made my debut there in 2014’s Rigoletto with Opera Australia,” said Gianluca Terranova. “When Lyndon [Terracini] offered the role of Rodolfo and the chance to return to Melbourne, it was an irresistible temptation and I cannot wait to join this wonderful company. And being a Roman, I admit I am also looking forward to being on tour in a city that understands coffee!”
Original cast members, Shane Lowrencev (Schaunard) and Andrew Jones (Marcello) will reprise their critically acclaimed roles, joined by Jane Ede (making her debut as Musetta) and Richard Anderson (Colline) who delivered stand-out performances last autumn in Don Giovanni.
This revival includes the Brian Thomson-designed set with its elaborate transitions between the artist’s garret and the opulence of Cafe Momus. The cast will be adorned in Julie Lynch’s costumes, which don’t pull any punches when it comes to the bawdy Berlin cabaret scene or the harsh realities of artistic life.
“Whether it be through the frequent adaptions or the score having been used in films like Moonstruck and Atonement, La Bohème is familiar to most of us, even if you’ve never set foot into an opera house,” said Artistic Director Lyndon Terracini. “If you’re new to opera, this production of La Bohème is the perfect first show – the work itself is of course brilliant, the production values are second-to-none and the cast we have assembled for Melbourne is set to impress.”
Director: Gale Edwards Starring: Lianna Haroutounian, Gianluca Terranova, Jane Ede, Andrew Jones, Shane Lowrencev, Richard Anderson, Graeme Macfarlane, Adrian Tamburini, Clifford Plumpton, Malcolm Ede, Benjamin Rasheed, Opera Australia Chorus, Orchestra Victoria Conductor: Andrea Molino Set Designer: Brian Thomson Costume Designer: Julie Lynch Lighting Designer: John Rayment Revival Director: Andy Morton
State Theatre – Arts Centre Melbourne, 100 St. Kilda Road, Melbourne
Season: 3 – 28 May 2016
Bookings: 1300 182 183 or online at: www.artscentremelbourne.com.au
Image: La Bohème – courtesy of Opera Australia