La Bohème is Puccini’s most popular opera and has been performed by all the greats including Pavarotti.
“…the libretto of La bohème is based on Henri Murger‘s novel, Scènes de la vie de bohème, a collection of vignettes portraying young bohemians living in the Latin Quarter of Paris in the 1840s. Although usually called a novel, it has no unified plot. … the opera’s libretto focuses on the relationship between Rodolfo and Mimì, ending with her death.” (Wikipedia)
I watched La Boehme on Saturday through Cineplex’s ‘Live at the Met’ program, which transmits the live production from New York City. The lead singers were amazing: Vittorio Grigolo who played Rodolfo, Massimo Cavalleti who played Marcello and Susanna Phillips who played Musetta.
The most amazing performance, however, was the ‘stand-in’ for Mimi, Kristine Opolais. Now this is quite the story. She sang Madame Butterfly the night before, went to bed at 4:30 am and was awoken at 7:30 to be asked to fill in for the regular singer who was too ill. Opolais’s singing and acting were flawless. She will go down in history as the only woman who died twice within twenty four hours on the stage of the MET.
It has everything.