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Seattle Opera.

La bohème

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May 2, 3, 6, 8, 9, 10, 13, 15, 16, 17, & 19, 2020

May 2, 3, 6, 8, 9, 10, 13, 15, 16, 17, & 19, 2020

Opera's Quintessential Love Story

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Overview

Everybody’s favorite opera. … Genuine theatrical magic.”

The Washington Post


By Giacomo Puccini

A timeless story of love and loss. An audience favorite for over a century, this tale of four young Parisians who dedicate their lives to art and love is guaranteed to touch your heart. Puccini’s lush, romantic score—performed by a 60-piece orchestra—perfectly captures the simple joys and heartbreaking sorrows of the idealistic bohemians. Their camaraderie, conviction, and passions, masterfully conveyed by an iconic score, make La bohème easy to love—and impossible to forget.

The “full-bore, traditional production” (DC Metro Weekly) from Washington National Opera is new to Seattle Opera. “Saturated in uncompromising quality and creative detail,” (DC Metro Weekly) the production fills the McCaw Hall stage with nearly 100 on-stage performers in a spectacular Parisian street scene. Two stellar casts include returning stars Angel Blue (Bess, Porgy and Bess), Ginger Costa-Jackson (Carmen, Carmen), Will Liverman (Figaro, The Barber of Seville), Ashraf Sewailam (Leporello, Don Giovanni), and Brandie Sutton (Clara, Porgy and Bess) and as well as many exciting Seattle Opera debuts.

Watch the preview

La bohème, Washington National Opera, 2017 © Scott Suchman

Listen to the music

La bohème, Washington National Opera, 2017 © Scott Suchman

In Italian with English Subtitles | at McCaw Hall
Performance Time: 2 hours, 36 minutes, including 2 intermissions

Special Events:

  • New this season! Join us for a weekday matinee performance Tuesday, May 19 at 11 AM.  Seniors 65+  pay only $80 for main floor seats! School groups also enjoy special rates. 
  • Join us for Family Day on Sunday, May 10 at 2 PM. For this specially designated performance, students age 18 and under pay only $20 for almost any seat. Please no babes in arms. 


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Synopsis

ACT I
Rodolfo is a poet, sharing a garret in Paris with his Bohemian friends: Marcello, a painter; Schaunard, a musician; and Colline, a philosopher. The men scrape along, picking up odd jobs and joking about their poverty as they pursue their arts. On Christmas Eve, a seamstress named Mimì knocks on the door. Her candle has blown out, and she asks Rodolfo for a light so she can return to her own apartment. At one touch of her cold little hand, Rodolfo falls in love with the fragile Mimì. He introduces himself in the aria “Che gelida manina.” She responds with an aria of her own, “Mi chiamano Mimì,” and their voices blend as they sing of love in the duet “O soave fanciulla.”

ACT II
Meanwhile, buoyed by an unexpected windfall, Rodolfo’s friends have gathered at the Café Momus to watch the people passing by and to enjoy a good meal. Rodolfo brings Mimì to the party. Marcello’s lover Musetta arrives with her latest protector, the wealthy and much older Alcindoro. As she sings her famous waltz, Musetta torments Marcello and Alcindoro, finally sending the older man away by pretending her foot hurts and demanding a new pair of shoes. While Alcindoro is gone, Musetta falls into Marcello’s arms and charges the Bohemians’ meal to Alcindoro’s account, much to the amusement of the crowd at the café. The friends leave together.

ACT III
On a cold winter morning some months later, Mimì seeks out Marcello. She wants his advice about Rodolfo, whose unreasonable jealousy is ruining their life together. Marcello tries to comfort her. When Rodolfo arrives, Mimì hides and Marcello questions him about Mimì. Rodolfo begins by accusing Mimì of being a flirt, but then confesses his real reason for trying to drive her off: Mimì’s coughing is growing worse, and Rodolfo has no money to provide medicine for her. Overhearing this, Mimì approaches Rodolfo and bids him goodbye in the aria “Donde lieta.” Grief stricken, the pair cannot bear to part yet and pledge to stay together until the spring.

ACT IV
One afternoon in the springtime, Rodolfo writes and Marcello paints at the garret, but their thoughts keep straying to their former sweethearts. Schaunard and Colline try to cheer the others up with a cheap supper, but the arrival of Musetta with a now drastically ill Mimì sobers all the men. Musetta gives her earrings to Marcello to pay for a doctor, and Colline decides to pawn his coat to help the girl (aria: “Vecchia zimarra”). Rodolfo stays by Mimì’s side, trying to cheer her by recalling their first meeting on the night that her candle blew out. The Bohemians return with their gifts, but it is too late. Mimì rallies for a few moments and then passes away. The distraught Rodolfo is the last to realize that she is dead.

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Cast

Jonathan Tetelman

Rodolfo

At Seattle Opera in 2019/20: Rodolfo, La bohème

Hometown: Titusville, NJ
Seattle Opera Debut
Recently: Rodolfo, La bohème (Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, Teatro Regio Torino); Alfredo, La traviata (Royal Opera House, Covent Garden); Mario Cavaradossi, Tosca (Semperoper Dresden, Teatro Regio Torino, Gran Teatre del Liceu)
Upcoming: Mario Cavaradossi, Tosca (Teatro Colón, Buenos Aires); B.F. Pinkerton, Madame Butterfly (Semperoper Dresden, Bregenzer Festspiele); Paolo, Francesca da Rimini (Deutsche Oper Berlin)

Last Updated: February 2020

Jonathan Tetelman

Rodolfo

Seattle Opera Debut
May 2, 8, 10, 13, 16, & 19

Yosep Kang

Rodolfo

At Seattle Opera in 2019/20: Rodolfo, La bohème

Hometown: Berlin, Germany
Seattle Opera Debut
Recently: Rodolfo, La bohème (Opera Australia); Raoul de Nangis, Les Huguenots (Opera Natoinal de Paris); Gualtiero, Il pirata (Amigos de la Ópera de A Coruña)
Upcoming: Faust, The Damnation of Faust (Latvian National Opera); Tenor, Verdi Requiem (Gyeongi Philharmonic); Don Carlo, Don Carlo (Deutsche Oper Berlin)

Last Updated: February 2020

Yosep Kang

Rodolfo

Seattle Opera Debut
May 3, 6, 9, 15, & 17

Angel Blue

Mimì

At Seattle Opera in 2019/20: Mimì, La bohème

Hometown: Apple Valley, CA
Seattle Opera Debut: Clara, Porgy and Bess (’11)
Previously at Seattle Opera: Bess, Porgy and Bess (’18); Violetta, La traviata (’17)
Recently: Bess, Porgy and Bess (Metropolitan Opera); Beethoven's 9th Symphony (Philadelphia Orchestra)
Upcoming: Leonora, Il trovatore (Los Angeles Opera); Violetta, La traviata (Arena di Verona and Teatro alla Scala); Tosca, Tosca (Semperoper Dresden); Aida, Aida (Santa Fe Opera)

Last Updated: February 2020

 

Angel Blue

Mimì

May 2, 8, 10, 13, 16, & 19

Vanessa Vasquez

Mimì

At Seattle Opera in 2019/20: Mimì, La bohème

Hometown: Scottsdale, AZ
Seattle Opera Debut
Recently: Micaela, Carmen (Dallas Opera)
Upcoming: Violetta, La traviata (Arizona Opera); Fiordiligi, Così fan tutte (Lyric Opera of Kansas City); Mimì, La bohème (Opera Philadelphia)

Last Updated: December 2018

Vanessa Vasquez

Mimì

Seattle Opera Debut
May 3, 6, 9, 15, & 17

Will Liverman

Marcello

At Seattle Opera in 2019/20: Marcello, La bohème
At Seattle Opera in 2020/21: Silvio, Pagliacci & Cavalleria rusticana

Hometown: Virginia Beach, VA
Seattle Opera Debut: Raimbaud, Count Ory (’16)
Previously at Seattle Opera: Figaro, The Barber of Seville (’17)
Recently: Papageno, The Magic Flute (Metropolitan Opera); Silvio, Pagliacci (Opera Colorado); Pantalone, The Love for Three Oranges (Opera Philadelphia)
Upcoming: Silvio, Pagliacci (Portland Opera); Count Almaviva, The Marriage of Figaro (Austin Opera); Leporello, Don Giovanni (Los Angeles Opera)

Last Updated: February 2020

Will Liverman

Marcello

May 2, 8, 10, 13, 16, & 19

Adrian Timpau

Marcello

At Seattle Opera in 2019/20: Marcello, La bohème

Hometown: Nisporeni, Moldova
Seattle Opera Debut
Recently: Onegin, Eugene Onegin (Staadttheater Klagenfurt, Austria); Ping, Turandot (Canadian Opera Company); Larkens, La fanciulla del West (Metropolitan Opera)
Upcoming: Escamillo, Carmen (Operhaus Zürich, Opéra Comique, Paris); Onegin, Eugene Onegin (Teatro Massimo, Palermo); Schaunard, La bohème (Washington National Opera)

Last Updated: February 2020

Adrian Timpau

Marcello

Seattle Opera Debut
May 3, 6, 9, 15, & 17

Ginger Costa-Jackson

Musetta

At Seattle Opera in 2019/20: Cinderella, Cinderella, Musetta, La bohème, and Three Singing Sisters

Hometown: Palermo, Sicily
Seattle Opera Debut: Dorabella, Così fan tutte (’18)
Previously at Seattle Opera: Carmen, Carmen ('19)
Recently: Cherubino, The Marriage of Figaro (La Monnaie); Dorabella, Così fan tutte (La Monnaie); Carmen, Carmen (San Diego Opera) 
Upcoming: Despina, Così fan tutte (Opéra National de Paris); Dorabella/Cherubino, Da Ponte Trilogy (Teatro Massimo); Giulietta, Tales of Hoffman (Gran Teatro de Liceu)

Last updated: February 2020

Ginger Costa-Jackson

Musetta

May 2, 8, 10, 13, 16, & 19

Brandie Sutton

Musetta

At Seattle Opera in 2019/20: Musetta, La bohème

Hometown: Huntsville, AL
Seattle Opera Debut: Clara, Porgy and Bess (’18)
Recently: Clara, Porgy and Bess (Metropolitan Opera); La Fee, Cinderella (Opera Birmingham); Pamina, The Magic Flute (Opera Maine)
Upcoming: Bess, Porgy and Bess (Theater an der Wien, Vienna,) Dew Fairy, Handel and Gretel (Metropolitan Opera), Clara, Porgy and Bess (Nashville Opera)

Last Updated: February 2020

Brandie Sutton

Musetta

May 3, 6, 9, 15, & 17

Ashraf Sewailam

Colline

At Seattle Opera in 2019/20: Colline, La bohème

Hometown: Cairo, Egypt
Seattle Opera Debut: Colline, La bohème (’07)
Previously at Seattle Opera: Leporello, Don Giovanni ('14); Mandarin, Turandot (’12); Pistol, Falstaff (’10)
Recently: Ramphis, Aida (Virginia Opera); Giorgio, I Puritani (Rotterdams Operakoor); Capitan, Florencia en el Amazonas (Pittsburgh Opera) 
Upcoming:  Dulcamara, The Elixir of Love (Amsterdams Operakoor)

Last updated: February 2020

Ashraf Sewailam

Colline

May 2, 8, 10, 13, 16, & 19

Federico De Michelis

Colline

At Seattle Opera in 2019/20: Colline, La bohème

Hometown: Buenos Aires, Argentina
Seattle Opera Debut
Recently: Leporello, Don Giovanni (Florida Grand Opera); Balthazar, La Favorite (Houston Grand Opera); Nourabad, The Pearl Fishers (Gran Teatre del Liceu)
Upcoming: Colline, La bohème (Gran Teatre del Liceu); Don Magnifico, Cinderella (New Generation Festival, Firenze)

Last Updated: February 2020

Federico De Michelis

Colline

Seattle Opera Debut
May 3, 6, 9, 15, & 17

Eugene Villanueva

Schaunard

At Seattle Opera in 2019/20: Schaunard, La bohème

Hometown: Daly City, CA
Seattle Opera Debut
Recently: Rodrigo, Don Carlo and Escamillo, Carmen (Staatstheater Braunschweig); Novice's Friend, Billy Budd (San Francisco Opera)
Upcoming: John Cree, Elizabeth Cree (West Edge Opera); Alfio, Cavalleria rusticana (Festival Ruggero Leoncavallo)

Last Updated: February 2020

Eugene Villanueva

Schaunard

May 2, 8, 10, 13, 16, & 19

Theo Hoffman

Schaunard

At Seattle Opera in 2019/20: Schaunard, La bohème

Hometown: New York, NY
Seattle Opera Debut
Recently: Mr. Kallenbach, Satyagraha (LA Opera); Denis, Denis & Katya (Opera Philadelphia); Papageno, The Magic Flute (LA Opera)
Upcoming: Papageno, The Magic Flute (Israeli Opera); Count Almaviva, The Marriage of Figaro (Atlanta Opera)

Last Updated: February 2020

Theo Hoffman

Schaunard

Seattle Opera Debut
May 3, 6, 9, 15, & 17

Cast

Creative Team

Joseph Colaneri

Conductor

At Seattle Opera in 2019/20: La bohème

Hometown: New York City, NY
Seattle Opera Debut
Music Director of The Glimmerglass Festival
Recently: Mefistofele (Metropolitan Opera); The Ghosts of Versailles (Opéra Royal de Versailles); La traviata (Glimmerglass Festival)
Upcoming: Die Feen (Glimmerglass Festival); The Sound of Music (Glimmerglass Festival)

Last Updated: February 2020

Joseph Colaneri

Conductor

Seattle Opera Debut

Peter Kazaras

Director

At Seattle Opera in 2018/19: The Turn of the Screw
At Seattle Opera in 2019/20: La bohème

Hometown: New York, NY
Seattle Opera Directing Debut: Norma (’03)
Previously at Seattle Opera: The Turn of the Screw (’18); An American Dream (’15 and ’17); The Consul (’14); Falstaff (’10)
Recently: The Barber of Seville (Washington National Opera); The Ring of Polykrates (Dallas Opera); The Marriage of Figaro (Washington National Opera)
Upcoming: The Ghosts of Versailles (Chautauqua Opera Festival); Samson and Delilah (Washington National Opera)

Last Updated: February 2019

Peter Kazaras

Director

John Todd

Choreographer

At Seattle Opera in 2019/20: Choreographer, La bohème

Hometown: Los Angeles, CA
Seattle Opera Debut
Recently: Choreographer, La bohème (Los Angeles Opera); Director/Choreographer, All Star (Off-Broadway); Director/Choreographer, A Year Of Living Dangerously (54 Below NYC)
Upcoming: Director, Star Wars Rise Of Skywalker Premiere (Lucas Film); Actor, Penny Dreadful (Showtime); Director, Disney World Tour (Feld Entertainment)

Last Updated: December 2019

John Todd

Choreographer

Seattle Opera Debut

John Keene

Chorusmaster

At Seattle Opera in 2019/20: Rigoletto, Cinderella, Eugene Onegin, La bohème
At Seattle Opera in 2020/21: Pagliacci & Cavalleria rusticana, The Elixir of Love, Don Giovanni, Tosca

Hometown: Lancaster, PA
Seattle Opera Debut: Chorusmaster, Fidelio (’12)
Previously at Seattle Opera: Chorusmaster, Eugene Onegin (‘20); Pianist, Recitals with Melody Wilson and Angela Brown (’20), and Three Singing Sisters (’19)
Upcoming: Chorusmaster, Pagliacci and Cavalleria rusticana and The Elixir of Love and Pianist, Angela Meade and Jamie Barton in Concert (Seattle Opera)

Last updated: February 2020

John Keene

Chorusmaster

Creative Team

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Performances take place at McCaw Hall, 321 Mercer Street, Seattle. Join our email list to receive personalized alerts with updates on traffic, dining, and parking for your specific performance, or choose a topic below to learn more.

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Sponsors

2019/20 Season Sponsor

In memory of Karyl Winn

Production Sponsor

Ann P. Wyckoff
Artsfund
C.E. Stuart Charitable Trust
Barbara Stephanus
Toby Bright and Nancy Ward
Additional support from 4Culture

 

Main Image © Philip Newton | Photos: La bohème, Washington National Opera, 2017 © Scott Suchman