La Boheme at Sydney Opera House – An enduring favourite

The Plus Ones were invited along to enjoy the opening night performance of Gale Edwards’ version of enduring Opera classic, La Boheme at Joan Sutherland Theatre, Sydney Opera House.

Guests were in awe as the plush red curtains lifted on Act I, which served to introduce the Opera’s main characters – a boisterous group of friends and flatmates, a painter and a poet who often enjoyed more good times than they could afford.

The majority of the Opera is set in the hustle and bustle of Latin Quarter – with the set doing a brilliant job of transporting viewers to the 1900s era, portraying it’s true rugged, bohemian charm.

One of the production’s most iconic scenes is inside the restaurant bar, when the striking bombshell Musetta, played by Julie Le Goodwin makes her entrance, stealing the eyes of the audience with her breath-taking song and extravagant costume.

La Boheme is a story of true love and loss, friendship, devotion, sickness, and passion throughout all the seasons. With this production set in the distinctly unforgiving 1930’s Berlin, the plot follows the ups and downs of one poor poet, Rodolfo and his sweet love, Mimi.

On opening night, the part of Mimi was played by South Korean soprana, Karah Son with her voice nothing short of entrancing. Theirs was a love that happened quickly and effortlessly, and similarly Puccini’s music matches the passion in their romance.

Divided into four impactful Acts, La Boheme juxtaposes the blissful lightness of love with the bitter winter – when jealousy overtakes Rodolfo and drives a wedge between two lovers. The story also follows Marcello and Musetta, who enjoy a different, lighter type of love. An on and off love that flickers like a flame on a windy night.

Audiences will be blown away by the visually-striking set design, particularly in Act 4, when the snow falls on the lovers as they sing and dance in the shadows.

La Boheme will continue to resonate with lovers of Opera for years to come.

The season runs until 11 March 2023, and is sung in Italian with English subtitles. Buy tickets here.

– Jill
Jill is a Sydney-based journalist who drinks by the logic: it’s five o’ clock somewhere. Follow her on Instagram.

The Plus Ones were invited guests of Opera Australia
Photos: Prudence Upton or Rhiannon Hopley