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2021

December

Fri
31 Dec 2021
Venue

Joan Sutherland Theatre, Sydney Opera House
Bennelong Point, Sydney

Language

Sung in Italian with English surtitles.

Running Time

Approximately 2 hours & 15 minutes, including one interval.

Please Note

This production contains partial nudity.

On a freezing Christmas Eve, love sparks. Two hands meet in the dark and four friends’ lives change forever.

Dress up to the nines, kick up your heels and leave the crowds behind as you stroll towards the iconic sails.

Enjoy a magnificent pre-performance dinner or a drink overlooking Sydney Harbour before you take your seats for a sumptuous production of Puccini’s La Bohème.

When Mimì meets Rodolfo, it’s love at first touch. They head out to bustling Café Momus, where the feisty Musetta and Marcello rekindle their relationship. But even the deepest love can’t warm a freezing winter. The Bohemians have some growing up to do.

Some emotions are too big for words alone, and for that, we have music. La Bohème exposes your soul to the feelings that only music can express. The music soars with the ecstasy of love, crackles with the pain of jealousy and cries with the agony of loss.

Set among the fishnets and fairy lights of 1930s Berlin, this is the final season of one of our most popular productions.

Stellar soprano, Valeria Sepe, sings the role of Mimì. Kang Wang sings as the poet, Rodolfo. Lorenzo Passerini conducts.

After the show, make your evening unforgettable with tickets to our exclusive Midnight Party. Held in the Northern Foyers of the Opera House, this event includes drinks, canapés and entertainment — and of course, a great vantage point for Sydney’s famous NYE fireworks.

There’s nowhere in the world like Sydney on New Year’s Eve, and there’s nowhere closer to the action than Sydney Opera House.

So go on, make this your most glamorous New Year ever.

If you don’t have tickets to the Midnight Party, there are a limited number of outdoor viewing areas you’ll be able to access following the performance. Please note that these spaces are limited and cannot be guaranteed.

Some fireworks can be viewed from the Southern Foyers inside Sydney Opera House at midnight, but you may not have a view of Sydney Harbour Bridge.

Package Options

Add the pre-performance dinner and/or the Midnight Party when you book your tickets for La Bohème.

La Boheme

Cheat Sheet: La Bohème

Everything you need to know about one of the world's most popular operas.

What happens in the story? Who was the composer? What should I expect from the music? Here’s everything you need to know…

Read the cheat sheet

La Bohème: The Costumes

Facts about La Bohème's beautiful costumes

Take one look at Julie Lynch’s costume designs for La Bohème, and it’s clear the designer is a details person.

See the designs

Covid Safe logo

Keeping you safe at the theatre

COVID Safety

Our performances will comply with all Public Health Orders and adhere to our epidemiologist-approved COVID-Safe Plan, including any requirement at the time of the performance that audience members be vaccinated. Full details of our COVID-Safe Plan will be published online closer to the event.

La Bohème at Sydney Opera House (2020)

Photograph: Prudence Upton

La Bohème at Sydney Opera House (2020)

Photograph: Prudence Upton

La Bohème at Sydney Opera House (2020)

Photograph: Prudence Upton

La Bohème at Sydney Opera House (2020)

Photograph: Prudence Upton

La Bohème at Sydney Opera House (2020)

Photograph: Prudence Upton

Cast & Creative

Conductor
Director
Revival Director
Set Designer
Costume Designer
Lighting Designer
Mimì
Rodolfo
Musetta
Marcello
Schaunard
Colline
Benoît/Alcindoro
Officer
Sergeant
Parpignol

Opera Australia Orchestra
Opera Australia Children’s Chorus
Opera Australia Chorus

Synopsis

ACT I

It is Christmas Eve. Rodolfo, a poet, and Marcello, a painter, are freezing in their studio. Marcello is painting The Crossing of the Red Sea. Colline, a philosopher, arrives as the fire Rodolfo has lit with one of his manuscripts, flickers and dies. Schaunard brings reinforcements – food, wine and fuel for the fire, bought with unexpected money from his earnings as a musician.

A knock at the door and Benoit, the landlord, arrives demanding the rent. The four Bohemians ply him with wine and then bundle him off. Marcello, Colline and Schaunard go off to join the celebrations at the Café Momus. Promising to join them soon, Rodolfo settles down to finish an article he is writing.

There is another knock. This time it is a neighbour, Mimì – a beautiful young seamstress, holding her key and an unlit candle. She begs a light and Rodolfo obliges. Mimì departs and drops her key. Together they search for the key, and their hands touch. They tell each other about themselves and Rodolfo passionately declares his love. The new lovers then set off into the night to join the others.

ACT II

The square in which the Café Momus is situated is the Bohemians’ favourite haunt, bustling with shoppers and hawkers. Rodolfo buys his new love a bonnet.

At the café, Marcello’s old flame, Musetta, appears with a new admirer, Alcindoro. To attract Marcello’s attention, Musetta bursts into her famous waltz song. Marcello responds and Musetta, pretending that her shoe is pinching, dispatches Alcindoro to a cobbler. She joins in the revelry with Marcello and his friends. When they depart they leave a reminder for the hapless Alcindoro on his return – a huge bill!

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