Sunday, October 25, 2015

The World of Film and Opera - La Bohème

According to one view, La Boheme may be the world’s most famous opera. San Francisco Public Library’s Art&Music&Recreation Department is pleased to continue its partnership with the Merola Opera Program and screen La Boheme on November 15, 2015, as part of Merola Goes to theMovies series. 

Based on a novel, the opera was composed by Giacomo Puccini as it opened in Turin in February 1, 1896. The popularity of La Boheme eclipsed Puccini’s earlier operatic works.
The Romanian-born Austrian Director Robert Dornhelm directed the opera for the film version on the composer’s 150th birth anniversary. Often referred to as the golden couple of the opera, Rolando Villazon and Anna Netrebko play the protagonists, Rodolfo and Mimi, of La Boheme.

The opera opens with a poet (Rodolfo), a musician, a painter, and philosopher sharing a tiny hole in Paris’ Latin Quarter. The young Mimi, the neighbor, suffers from tuberculosis. Rodolfo and Mimi fall in love before things get complicated, with tragedy at the end. 

San Francisco Public Library carries in its collection several books, not to mention DVDs and CDS,  with regards to the opera La Boheme which will interest readers should they want to learn more about the world of opera, the legendary composer Puccini, and the world of La Boheme.

We suggest the following titles:

Letters of Giacomo Puccini: Mainly Connected with the Composition and Production of his Operas (Harrap, 1974).

Losing the Plot in Opera: Myths and Secrets of the World's Great Operas by Brian Castles-Onion (Metro, 2009).

Puccini: His Life and Works by Julian Budden (Oxford University Press, 2002).

Puccini Without Excuses: A Refreshing Reassessment of the World's Most popular Composer by William Berger (Vintage Books, 2005).

The Romantic World of Puccini: A New Critical Appraisal of the Operas by Iris J. Arnesen (McFarland & Co., 2009).

10 Operatic Masterpieces, designed by Merle Armitage; text by Olin Downes (Broadcast Music; G. Ricordi; Charles Scribner's Sons, 1952).

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