Opera in Highland Park. Pacific Opera Project presents La bohéme with a twist

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Pacific Opera Project tranforms Puccini’s Parisian bohemians to Highland Park hipsters in their first “POP-Up” production. 

Now concluding its first full season, Pacific Opera Project has demonstrated a commitment to producing high-quality theatrical entertainment with low price tags. Bringing opera to non-traditional audiences — often for just the price of a movie ticket — is a major aim for this energetic new enterprise.  In November (only days after closing their production of Sweeney Todd) they present Puccini’s masterpiece La bohéme (“the bohemians”) in Highland Park.  Although for this setting, the translation could read “The Hipsters”.  An 1830’s Parisian garret becomes a present day Los Angeles loft apartment during a particularly cold SoCal winter.  The artist, poet, philosopher, musician, seamstress, and actress become 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. 

La bohéme will be the first in a continuing series of “POP-Up” productions presented by this innovative company that is intent on bringing entertaining opera to all kinds of audiences.  (POP literally brings opera to audiences.  Highland Park will be the third venue POP visits within a month.)   POP-Up productions are presented with minimal sets, production costs, and rehearsal time in new or unusual venues across Los Angeles and feature artists of the highest caliber with an emphasis on high entertainment value for lost cost to the public.  They are the ideal way to introduce audiences to opera.  Productions rehearse for a very short time (a week in this case) and then “pop-up” for a weekend or two.  This production features an all-star cast who have appeared at such places as Opera Theatre of St. Louis, Opera San José, The Glimmerglass Festival, Indianapolis Opera, Los Angeles Opera, Opera Santa Barbara, and Santa Fe Opera. 

For the first time POP will be able to offer table seating with food (cheese, bread, fruit) and wine.  Refreshments will also be available for general seating.  It's a party! 

The show is designed and directed by Josh Shaw, conducted and accompanied by Stephen Karr, with a cast featuring tenor Clay Hilley as Rodolfo (POP debut), Adam Meza (last season’s Don Giovanni) as Marcello, Daria Somers (previously Donna Elvira and Fiordiligi with POP) as Mimi, Katherine Giaquinto (also Fiordiligi) as Musetta, E. Scott Levin (seen as Leporello and Judge Turpin) as Schaunard, Christopher Remmel (Judge Turpin in October) as Colline, and Robert Norman (Boy 1 in Trouble in Tahiti, Don Ottavio in Don Giovanni, and Beadle in Sweeney Todd) as Benoit/Alcindoro/ and everyone else.  This cast cannot be missed!

 Universally loved, La bohéme is for opera lovers and newbies alike.  Truly talented singers and actors will pour their hearts out right at your table.  The audience becomes part of the action in act two as the show extends into the audience at Café Momus.  With the poster tag line, “Hipsters...Yeah, I invented that shit.  –G. Puccini”, who knows what to expect from this daring young company. 

Accompanied by piano.  Presented in Italian with original English supertitles. Tickets $20 for General Admission, $60 for a table of two, $100 for a table of four.  Tables come with a bottle of wine and small “bohemian feast”.  All tickets available online at www.pacificoperaproject.com or by calling 323-739-6122.  Wine, soft drinks, and light food available for a small suggested donation.  All proceeds go to artist fees.  Cash preferred.  


Who:  Pacific Opera Project: Los Angeles’s most accessible opera company; committed to fully professional productions of worthy masterpieces and daring new works of opera       and musical theater produced with artists of the highest caliber in diverse venues. 

What:  Giacomo Puccini’s La bohéme.

When: November 9 (8pm), November 10 (8pm), November 11 (3pm)

 Where: Highland Park Ebell Club 131 S. Avenue 57 Los Angeles  90042

Pacific Opera Project is dedicated to presenting energetic, high-quality, accessible performances of a broad variety of operatic repertoire; to benefiting the larger artistic community of Southern California by providing a fully professional environment for our artists; and to cultivating and enriching a wide audience in venues both conventional and unconventional throughout the region with innovative performances that enliven and preserve the art form.


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