Photo: Ken Howard/Metropolitan Opera
There have been a number of additions to the Met schedule this season. Operas, such as La Donna Del Lago and The Pearl Fishers are gracing the stage after years of inactivity. Because of that staples like Carmen and Aida have been put on hiatus.
That said, Puccini’s La Bohème is still on the repertory.
On Wednesday, the Met put on the 1281st performance of the opera and over 400 times by Franco Zeffirelli’s staging.
The return for La Bohème this time features a new cast for the opera with newcomer Maria Agresta making her Met debut in the role of Mimi. The Vallo, Italy native gave a strong performance, which carried the third and fourth acts. The gentle and lovely soprano added new depth to the role.
Opposite to her, Bryan Hymel fit very well in the role of Rudolfo and seemed to have a chemistry with Agresta. Quinn Kelsey was rich in his take of Marcello, Rudofo’s friend, while David Pershall and newcomer Kihwan Sim filled out the male quartet respectably, as Schaunard and Colline, respectively.
Susanna Phillips falls back into the role of Mussetta, a role she sang a dozen times. She worked well in the play, but was overshadowed by Agresta’s Mimi. But maybe having a new voice on the stage will give her something to aspire to in the future.
Conducted by Dan Ettinger, who led the orchestra with gusto. He really brought out the best in the band with excellent attention to detail, especially with the sweeping drama of the piece.
For those who haven’t seen La Bohème it’s a must see and those who have will appreciate the subtle changes with the new cast.
La Bohème runs through May 5 at the Metropolitan Opera House at Lincoln Center with performances on January 9, 13, 16, 19, and 23. And will be reprised on April 15 with additional performances on April 21, 25, 29 and May 5. Beginning April 15, the roles of Musetta, Colline, and Schaunard will be played by Ailyn Pérez, Robert Tagliavini, and Alessio Arduini.
Tickets begin at $25.00 and are available at the Metropolitan Opera’s website www.metopera.org.