CSUN’s Department of Theatre presents: ‘La bohème’


Photo courtesy of the CSUN Department of Teatre’s website.

Brianna Arias, Reporter

The CSUN theater department will be putting on its first production of the semester, “La bohème,” from March 9-12 in the Campus Theatre.

The production is led by stage director Sara E. Widzer and will be conducted by Mercedes Juan Mussotto.

“La bohème” is an opera from the 1890s, organized in four acts, composed by Giacomo Puccini. After gaining popularity in Italy, productions started taking place outside the country, first in Argentina.

The opera is based on the Henri Murger novel, “Scènes de la vie de Bohème.”

According to The Metropolitan Opera, the opera revolves around four bohemians – a poet, a painter, a musician and a philosopher – who live together in Paris. One Christmas Eve changes their lives forever, when a young woman named Mimì knocks on their door looking for help, and falls in love with Rodolfo, one of the bohemians.

Despite how hard and fast Rodolfo and Mimì fall in love with one another, their love is soon tested. Mimì becomes sick, and they struggle to obtain and afford the medication she needs. They separate from one another, but eventually, Mimì returns to Rodolfo, only to die from her disease shortly after. The play ends as Rodolfo mourns her death.

Some other notable characters in the play are Marcello, who is the painter and Rodolfo’s best friend, and Musetta, a singer who is Marcello’s lover.

Marcello and Musetta’s relationship goes through many ups and downs as the story progresses. From the start, we learn that Marcello and Musetta were lovers in the past. Throughout the play, they attempt to make each other jealous with other lovers, and eventually Musetta falls back into Marcello’s arms only for them to split again.

The lovers rekindle when they find out that Mimì is sick. Musetta offers to pray for her and sell her earrings to afford Mimì’s medicine, but it is too late.

“La bohème” has the right to call itself the world’s most popular opera, according to The Metropolitan Opera. Its creator, Puccini, was not only popular during his lifetime, but continues to be an important figure in opera companies around the world today.

Curtain times for the CSUN theater department’s “La bohème” will be 7:30 p.m. on Thursday, Friday and Saturday. Sunday’s showtime will begin at 2 p.m.