- photo of "the young and vibrant cast" of Portland Opera's production of La Boheme.
Portland Opera's la Boheme
Hold on to your heart!
A wondrous young love blossoms in the bohemian world of 1830s Paris.
It all begins with Mimi's gentle voice at the door. Might she have a light for her candle? And that one small light ignites opera's most touching and poignant love story.
From the moment Rodolfo stares into her eyes and Puccini's violins slowly rise from the quiet, an extraordinary journey begins. For them. And for us. With their first tender kiss, we're swept back to the miraculous time of our own first love.
One of the most romantic operas ever composed! Soaring, lyrical, and intensely emotional.
Sung in Italian with English translations projected above the stage.
- overview from Portland Opera website
I am so excited that we will be at the 2:00 p.m. production of La Boheme in Portland today. Mike and I attended Portland Opera's February 2001 production of this opera, just four months after my mothers death. We had been season ticket-holders for five years and had worked our way down to the center orchestra section by 2001, so close it was almost like being on stage. When, amongst the snowy scenery in Act III, there was a white bust of a woman in the foreground setting that looked so much like my mother that Mike and I gasped together as the curtains parted, it became a wondrous connection with her.
After my mother's death in October 2000 I experienced a random and magical series of occurences that I called ICMs (Ironies and Cosmic Messages) when describing them to Mike, in my journal, in letters to my sister. The bust on stage at La Boheme in 2001 was one of those.
We let our Portland Opera season tickets lapse in 2003. The money needed to go elsewhere and I ceased using charge cards for entertainment. But oh how I have missed the opera. Listening to it on the radio and on CDs is nice, but doesn't come close to being in the audience. Determined to attend at least one opera in the 2009-10 season, I was thrilled to see that the new production of La Boheme was scheduled on my mother's birthday (one of those ICMs as the anniversary of her death also approaches) - and I got us great Box Seat tickets, cash not credit, so all seems right with the world.
Massenet feels it as a Frenchman, with powder and minuets. I shall feel it as an Italian, with desperate passion.
-- Puccini, quoted in M Carner, Puccini (1974)
candle photo via tinypic