This opera in four acts was first performed at Turin on February 1, 1896. Music is by Giacomo Puccini, Libretto by Giuseppe Giacosa and Luigi Illica, after Henry Murger’s novel “Scenes de la vie de Boheme”. Recorded live at the Sydney Opera House, February 25, 1993. This performance stars Cheryl Baker as Mimi, David Hobson as Rodolfo, Roger Lemke as Marcello and Christine Douglas as Musetta; the four star-crossed lovers. Stage direction by Baz Luhrmann. Music performed by the Australian Opera and Ballet Orchestra and conducted by Julian Smith. In Paris in 1830, two young, free-spirited artists, Rodolfo and Marcello, live in poverty with their loves Mimi and Musetta. A story of passionate love and unbreakable hope in the face of despair. The spirit of youth, its gaiety and pathos is captured beautifully. The opera makes its effect atmospherically in scenes, like a series of impressionist paintings, not by the usual developing dramatic action. The scenery is minimal and captures the brevity of the lives of the characters and contrasts the extreme gravity of their situation.
Australian Broadcasting Corporation