10/01/2011

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LA BOHEME Dear friends,<br /><br />As you may or may not know by now, one of the varied musical hats I wear is that of Music Director of Longwood Opera. To properly conclude this, our 25th consecutive season, it is with great pleasure indeed that I invite you all to attend one of our only 2 performances of Puccini's timeless and primal opera, La Boheme. Themes of new love, end of love, death, springtime, good times all wrapped up in a score that remains a cornerstone of the operatic repertoire since its premiere 121 years ago.<br />Having heard over 200 young singers in last year's auditions, I can safely say that we have fielded an unusually fine cast of young singers. These are the people of whom we will all be saying "I knew them when...."<br />Scott Brumit's experienced and adept staging cuts to the true essentials of telling the story. While not as updated as a recent take of this story entitled "Rent", Puccini's Boheme nevertheless remains timeless in our own contemporary Parisian setting. Do not worry about understanding French or Italian here, this masterpiece of Italian opera set in Paris is, like all our Longwood Opera productions, sung in clearly understood English.<br />In less than 2 hours an entire world of human emotion is displayed here in a concise treatment of the original short story. (Unlike Richard Wagner, who would have taken 4 hours to tell the story and add layers of mythic national consciousness, Puccini works quickly.) Its kind of hard to imagine a dry eye after this show, even in the worst of performances, because it is so elemental and basic. Folks with a knowledge of "Rent" know what I mean).<br />There are only 2 performances of this opera as we no longer take our shows on the road. Please refer to <a href="https://www.longwoodopera.org/">https://www.longwoodopera.org/</a> for specific ticket information.<br />Needless to say, I look forward to greeting as many PACC folk as possible at the conclusion of the performance.<br />If one has never attended an opera, if one knows nothing about this art form, indeed even if one dislikes opera because of inherent stereotypes of fat and screaming singers in a foreign language, this work (and I daresay our own production) is the very best possible introduction to the incredibly rich world of the art form called "opera".<br />I hope to see you!<br /><br />All very best,<br />Jeffrey Brody<br />

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