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As You've Never Seen It Before - La boheme

By David Rentz, 2014-11-15

The Orange County Symphony (OCS) and Los Angeles’s Pacific Opera Project (POP) will collaborate to bring to the stage POP’s acclaimed, hipster-themed production of Giacomo Puccini’s beloved 1896 opera, La bohème.

Just in time for Christmas, POP is reviving one of its most innovative shows for a five-night, piano-accompanied run in Highland Park; they will bring the cast down to Anaheim for one performance with the OCS. Literally “The Bohemians,” La bohème could just as easily be translated at “The Hipsters”—Puccini’s 1830s era Parisian garret becomes a present-day Los Angeles loft apartment during a particularly cold SoCal winter. The artist, poet, philosopher, musician, seamstress and actress are transformed into a graphic designer, screen-play writer, English major, indie-rocker, fashion designer and, well, actress as the group deals with the timeless issues of life, love, jealousy, and overdue bills.

The fully staged version of La Boheme

La bohème features an all-star cast whose members have appeared with such companies as Los Angeles Opera, Opera San José, Wolf Trap Opera Company, Union Avenue Opera, Tulsa Opera, Opera San Luis Obispo, West Bay Opera, and Opera Santa Barbara. This lightly-staged concert production will be presented in Italian with “ironically clever” English supertitles, and with both the singers and the orchestra in costume!

Called “a sharp and talented troupe” by the L.A. Daily News and named “Best Scrappy Opera Company of 2014” by L.A. Weekly, the Pacific Opera Project is Los Angeles’s most accessible opera company, committed to professional productions of worthy masterpieces and daring new works of opera and musical theater produced with artists of the highest caliber in diverse venues. POP is led by artistic director Josh Shaw and music director Stephen Karr.

Founded in 1985, the Orange County Symphony is a regional semi-professional orchestra serving a metropolitan area of approximately 3 million people. The OCS is honored to be part of the Anaheim community and in July, 2011 was designated as the Resident Symphony Orchestra for the City of Anaheim. The orchestra is led by Dr. David Rentz, an accomplished choral, orchestral, and opera conductor, who currently serves as associate professor of music at Chaffey College, choir director at the First Congregational Church of Riverside, and resident conductor of the Chamber Opera Players of Los Angeles.



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