It was a delight to bring my production of Puccini’s La Bohème to life at Opera San Antonio this past spring and it was an even bigger delight to discover that the show had the company’s highest tickets sales to date! As wonderful and surprising as that news is, it’s also fitting for an opera that is chock-full of everything an audience is hungry for in today’s world – stunning music, vibrant characters, effervescent and youthful comedy, and a deep love story.
What a gift it was to be able to create a vivid world for an audience to escape into for an evening of theater! Much of the praise and fun is due to the phenomenal cast we had for the production, particularly our group of bohemians. Derek Stark, Amanda Kingston, Daniel Scofield, Jessica Jones, Andrew McLaughlin, and Justin Hopkins were essentially living the youthful and artistic life of La bohème both on and off the stage. Their collective youth, energy, love for each other, and hunger for life was palpable every moment of the day. Working with artists who have that kind of trust and bond makes it easy to bring an opera of this depth to life in a way that captures a snapshot of youthful hopes and dreams from Puccini’s time to the present.
Puccini’s operas stand out in the repertoire not just for their musical beauty and imagination-capturing storylines, but also because of his ability to propel the dramatic action. La bohème begins with an unconventional leap into action: there is no overture, we dive right into the heart of Paris and the world of the bohemians. I look forward to watching OPERA San Antonio leap into action again this fall with La Traviata on September 13th and 15th.
I plan to be there to watch the action unfold! Will you?