Baz Luhrmann's La Boheme
Posted 22 December 2002 - 05:39 AM
Posted 22 December 2002 - 06:52 AM
Mel, are you familiar with Rent? That's an updated version of Boheme — with an all-new score, not Puccini's.
Posted 22 December 2002 - 07:38 AM
Here's the link: http://www.nytimes.c...TOMM.html?8hpib
Posted 22 December 2002 - 09:41 AM
Toward the end of the piece he says "The performance clocks in at a swift 2 hours 15 minutes." This is something that came up earlier on this thread, when Calliope wondered if anything had been cut. With one twenty-minute intermission and two five-minute pauses, that leaves an hour and 45 minutes of music. I checked my old Sir Thomas Beecham recording and found it to be almost exactly that length. Oddly enough, Tommasini mentions that same recording (It's a classic). He says, "Though buoyant, Beecham's performance is much more leisurely." To quote Tommasini, "Go figure."
Posted 22 December 2002 - 09:56 AM
Posted 22 December 2002 - 04:45 PM
Yup, I think you are correct. I had also heard that Special Event (or whatever the exact title is) would be the cateogry, but there are some issues with that as well, namely that I believe the actors/singers would be excluded from nominations and that only the production could be nomnated. Also the issue of WHO could be nominated has been raised since there are three rotating casts, and TONY tradition dictated that only the opening cast can be nominated.
All of this may seem quite trivial, but I find it most interesting.
Posted 23 December 2002 - 05:35 AM
Look What They're Doing to Opera
Yet from a musical perspective, many veteran opera buffs will be dismayed, as I was, by the compromises the production has made, most grievously in its use of body microphones to amplify the singers and two digital sampling keyboards to fill in the instrumental textures that the meager (for Puccini) 26-piece orchestra leaves blank. Newcomers to opera who think they are experiencing the real thing are not.
The amplification of "La Bohème" at the Broadway Theater is far more subtle than the blasting sound systems so common at musicals these days. Still, the actual voices are flattened into an amplified wall of sound, and the spatial element of operatic singing, with voices coming from different locations on the stage, is completely undermined. It's sometimes difficult, especially in the crowd scenes, to tell who is singing without checking to see whose lips are moving. And the voices are thrust at you, even those of the milk maids who, as they pass the city gates in Act III, sing a wistful little tune that is supposed to be subdued and gentle..
Posted 18 January 2003 - 08:04 AM
http://www.playbill....icle/77389.html (next to last paragraph)
The same article says that Twyla Tharp's Movin' Out will be eligible in the Best Musical category.
Posted 10 April 2003 - 09:01 AM
The miking didn't bother me at all. It was not that different from what happens at NYCO. What DID bother me was the non-reaction of the audience at the end of the great arias and duets: Che Gelida Manina; Mi Chiamano Mimi; Ah Mimi, Tu Piu Non Torni; Vecchia Zimarra, Senti -- no applause after any of them. Even mediocre renditions of these provoke ovations at the opera house. But here, nothing -- a unique and depressing experience for me. That peculiarity aside, I enjoyed the show and hope business picks up before it's too late.
Posted 10 April 2003 - 11:26 AM
Posted 15 April 2003 - 09:18 AM
Posted 02 May 2003 - 11:27 AM
Posted 02 May 2003 - 11:34 AM
Posted 22 May 2003 - 03:26 PM
The theater was not full, but it certainly was a good house. I only saw a large block of empty seats in the last few rows of the rear mezz. We were sitting front mezz, 4th row. Perfect seats.
Not a large house by any means. It was a delight to be so close to the singers. I did not notice any miking or amplification, so although I am sure it was there, it didn't blast or offend the ears in any way. There was no distortion of the voices that I could discern.
I think the change of time period suits the production, and the story, very well. And Juliet--oh my yes--the RED DRESS! In fact, I am going to disagree with my very good friend Farrell Fan, and say that Jessica Comeau's Musetta made the show for me. I was absolutely entranced by her "Quando M'en Vo". The red hair and the red dress...to die for. I have heard many renditions of Musetta's Waltz, in fact I just listened to THE VOICE of Renee Fleming on the Dream Cast CD, and even though Fleming does have the voice of the century, I preferred Comeau's freshness, sauciness, her racy-ness. It was a different interpretation, for sure, and one that I adored. I, for one, found Mimi to be a bit over-flirty, to tell the truth, although Ekaterina Solovyeva has the voice of an angel (and since I was accompanying Russians to the theater I was delighted that we got the Mimi from St. Petersburg), I am accustomed to a quieter and more shy Mimi.
Only one of my visitors spoke English fluently, and one spoke none at all, but I had a translation of the synopsis in Russian, and it didn't matter anyway--the story is easy to follow, even without the supertitles. I did find the different fonts a bit distracting at first, until I got used to it, then I didn't even notice.
I'm not too worried about this production closing imminently. The theater was quite full, the lines for the rush tickets are still long (my daughter and her friends had tried several times without success), and the audience was appreciative.
Wednesday afternoon we ran over to the Met to catch "Hereafter". I'm almost scared to say that I liked it--after the reviews and the reactions here. But that is for another thread.
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