The Metropolitan Opera Presents: La Bohème (Libretto & Background)

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Item: 9781574674446


The Metropolitan Opera Presents: La Bohème (Libretto & Background)

The Metropolitan Opera Presents: La Bohème provides all the information you’ll need to appreciate Puccini’s opera, whether you’re at the Met, watching it online, as a Live in HD presentation, or listening on the radio.

A passionate and timeless story of love among impoverished young artists in Paris, La Bohème has been staged at the Met more often than any other opera. Its story of tenderness and tragedy touches the heart, and makes a powerful impression even on those who are new to opera.

Features the complete libretto by Luigi Illica and Giuseppe Giacosa, current and historic images from Met productions, an introductory “In Focus” feature, and the full Met program notes.

  • Paperback: 208 pages
  • Publisher: Amadeus (April 1, 2014)
  • Dimensions: 6” W x 0.5” D x 9” H

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La Bohème

One of the most popular operas of all time, Giacomo Puccini’s timeless masterpiece, La Bohème made its world première on February 1,1896, at the Teatro Regio in Turin, where it was conducted by the young Arturo Toscanini.

Set in Paris, in the 1830s, the near-destitute artist Marcello and poet Rodolfo try to keep warm on Christmas Eve in their Latin Quarter garret by feeding the stove with pages from Rodolfo’s latest drama. When Mimì, their neighbor, knocks on the door asking to borrow a candle she and Rodolfo
meet. Thus begins a fateful relationship as the two struggle to sustain their love against the challenges of poverty, jealousy and physical decline.

The Metropolitan Opera staged La Bohème for the first time on December 26,1900, with Luigi Mancinelli conducting. Since then it has been performed at the Met over a thousand times. Its 2018/2019 season production was hailed by the New York Times as “A thrilling La Bohème … radiating warmth … luxury cast”.

Puccini died in Brussels on November 29, 1924. The news of his death reached Rome during a performance of La Bohème. The opera was immediately stopped and the orchestra played Chopin’s Funeral March for the stunned audience.



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