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La Bohème

Hot Date: La Bohème

Ottawa’s Joyce El-Khoury stars as Mimi in Opera Lyra’s La Bohème. Photo © Dario Acosta

After a brief hiatus last year, Opera Lyra is back and starting its new season with a bang — a production of one of the most beloved operas ever composed. Giacomo Puccini’s La Bohème tells the tale of young bohemians in Paris’ Latin Quarter in the 1840s. The part of Mimi, the mortally ill seamstress, is played by Ottawa’s own Joyce El-Khoury, whose international career has been thriving and landing her gigs at the likes of the Met Opera in New York and the Welsh National Opera.

Sept. 8, 10, 12, and 15. National Arts Centre, Southam Hall, 53 Elgin St., www.nac-cna.ca.

Weekend Roundup, December 2 to 4

Friday: Diana Thorneycroft's Group of Seven Awkward Moments is among the images at Gallery TPW's Photorama

Friday, December 2
‘Tis the season to deck the halls with quality artwork. Photography enthusiasts need look no further than 25th anniversary of Gallery TPW’s Photorama show and sale, which has its public opening tonight. Then drop into Gallery 44 for its annual Wall-to-Wall sale, featuring framed and unframed works by Toronto artists.

Inject a bit of spirit into your holiday season with the Soulful Messiah, Quincy Jones’ award-winning R&B rendition of Handel’s classic. At Harbourfront Centre’s Fleck Dance Theatre, Ballet Creole celebrates its 10th year of performing this work with their signature blend of ballet, modern and African-Caribbean dance.

La Bohème’s timeless tale of artists grappling with love, death and paying the bills is well-suited to its new incarnation by theatre company Against the Grain. Puccini’s infamous opera is pulled into the present-day, translated into English and set entirely within the confines of bohemian hangout Tranzac.

There’s more to do after the jump!

Two for the Show—The Canadian Opera Company in April

A duet of classic Italian operas hits all the right notes.
—By Amy Baker

Soaring arias, stunning sets, tales of tragedy—this month, experience dramatic performance at its finest as the Canadian Opera Company presents tour de force works by Giacomo Puccini and Giuseppe Verdi.

One of the most celebrated operas in history, La Bohème sets the stage for a love affair guaranteed to captivate the whole audience. Based on French novelist and poet Henri Murger’s autobiographical novel, Scènes de la vie de bohème, this four-act opera tells the story of Mimi and Rodolfo, two bohemians struggling over issues of infidelity, jealousy and poverty in 1830s Paris. Created by Puccini and his two librettists, Luigi Illica and Giuseppe Giacosa, the show premiered at Turin’s Teatro Regio in 1896 and received mixed reviews. However, more than a century later, it is a staple of the Italian repertory and one of the most widely performed operas in the world. As Thomas Edison once said: “Men die and governments change, but the songs of La Bohème will live forever.” The COC’s production, starring Canadians David Pomeroy and Frédérique Vézina in the lead roles, is sure to be a worthy addition to the canon of this timeless classic.

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