Cher Public

Webcast: La Bohème

Join La Cieca at the final frontier of Claus Guth‘s controversial new production of La Bohème, webcast at 1:30 PM today. With typical generosity, your doyenne offers you two ways to watch the performance, specified after the jump. 

You can join La Cieca for an interactive chat at (Note that for full chat functionality you will need to create an account on

Or you can watch the performance directly from and discuss in the comments section below.

  • La Cieca

    Rabbit room is now open at

  • Satisfied

    Say what you will about the concept, but the production certainly looks really incredible!

  • Mike Danko

    Will it be archived for later viewing?

  • Brackweaver

    At least you can find the leads in Act 2. La B. is likely the most performed opera so why not take risks? It does remind my of a college production of Magic Flute back in the 80’s done a la Star Trek!

  • trevor

    Looking for my Buck Rodgers Sonic Dystrophier to prepare for Act III.

  • trevor

    Actually enjoying the production, despite the space ship conceit and Rodolfo’s shameless hamming.

  • Camille

    Does it snow on the moon?

    • Tamerlano

      I’m always a sucker for Tebaldi in Boheme, particularly the “Sono andati” which is phrased SO beautifully…she makes such beautiful music. You know, I adore Callas and forget about Tebaldi…until I hear her in music she was born to sing and it hits me that she too was a genius in her own way.

      • southerndoc1

        Tebaldi is supreme as Mimi, but I wonder what people would think of such a big voice in the role these days? There are so many phrases -- the Andati, the Addio, ma quando vien lo sgelo, and on and on -- that just make love to her voice.

        • Ivy Lin

          I don’t think Tebaldi would be accepted as Mimi today not just because her voice was so big and she was so physically imposing. Wasn’t she nearly six feet and had to find all sorts of ways to seem shorter than her tenor including bending her knees? Also live she always had to take a transposition to avoid the high C in “O soave fanciulla.” She was gorgeous in this role though.

          • Armerjacquino

            They both sound so unbelievably gorgeous in this.

            • Bill

              Tebaldi sang gorgeously as Mimi at the Met.
              She could modulate her voice for the most part and it was hardly over sized for Boheme
              and the richness of her tone was perfect for Puccini. I always found Tebaldi to be a bit
              demure on the stage anyway and Mimi does
              not require a lot of stomping around. Nor did
              I find Tebaldi’s height a detriment. Nor did she sing Vissi d’Arte in Tosca full blast either.
              In the first half of Tebaldi’s career her voice had not developed the harshness at the top which was noticeable in her last years.
              Most Mimis I have heard are lyrics but I certainly enjoyed Benackova and she had a larger voice than most Mimis but both she and Tebaldi were not over animated personalities on stage and their quiet presences were appreciated as both seemed
              very natural and could sing softly with dulcet tones. I believe Tebaldi had some difficulty with the rapid footwork required as Alice Ford -- but Mimi is for the most part quite tranquil, almost fragile. Unfortunately I cannot think of an Italian soprano (spinto or otherwise) today who has the plushness or beauty of tone that Tebaldi sported in her prime. Of course I loved other Mimis who were lyric sopranos such as de los Angeles, Freni, Pilou, Cotrubas, Scotto, and Gheorghiu and Stoyanova to name a few who quickly come to mind.

        • Armerjacquino

          I’d love to hear a voice as big as Tebaldi’s as Mimi- but even in her prime people with Tebaldi-sized voices didn’t sing Mimi all that much. Plus of course bigger voices tend to be less purely beautiful than hers was. That said, Netrebko still does it from time to time, doesn’t she?

  • trevor

    snow looks like hazmat…

  • Brackweaver

    The concept got more in the way in Acts 3 and 4. I’ve given up on 4. What did Cher say in Moonstruck? Something about it being so fucking sad?

    • Camille

      Oh I can’t remember what Cher said anymore—it’s been too long now and I wasn’t that keen about the movie because I didn’t believe in the Cage character he just seemed too OTT to be working class real. I should watch it again, now I finally broke my virginity and saw the production a couple years ago.

    • H_Badger

      “That was just so… awful! Beautiful. Sad. She died! I couldn’t believe it! I didn’t think she was going to die. I knew she was sick…she was coughing her brains out. And still, she had to sing all the time…”

    • Jungfer Marianne Leitmetzerin

      Brackweaver! Off topic, but did you ever see that I posted the opera from which your Parterre name originates?

      • Brackweaver

        Thank you, I didn’t know you had. I will listen. My Mother was in the opera in the 60’s and my sister and I assumed that Brack Weaver was the one word name, Brackweaver. We are still apt to break into bits of the opera during holiday meals.

  • Camille

    It’s the Dude! He done well.

    Bravi to the kids, they were good.

  • trevor

    In spite of all the distractions (a mime!!!), an excellent Boheme. Dude rules!

  • Armerjacquino

    Is this available online? Wasn’t able to make the rabbit room but I’m intrigued by the production. I presume Car was on for Yoncheva? (Not that it matters, as I love them both…)

    • trevor

      I watched it on Medici TV (Thanks for the link, La Cieca). It says the video will “soon be on replay.” Car was a moving Mimi, especially in Act III.

      • Armerjacquino

        Thank you!

    • Camille

      Yes, Car. Very sweet and affecting. You believed her.

    • Jungfer Marianne Leitmetzerin

      E-mail me an address where you can receive a file sent via WeTransfer and I will send it to you.

  • Hey I thought this was supposed to be a total deranged Eurotrash failure?

    • trevor

      Au contraire. I shed hot wet tears at the end of Act III and again at the end of Act IV. How does Puccini do that?

    • PCally

      lol I didn’t love it but it was stunning to look at certainly and Guth knows what to do with singers. Worked for me over all, not exactly sure what all the fuss is about other than La Boheme rarely done differently.

      • I saw it this evening (couldn’t see it when I originally should because I was in Hungary for work). To be honest I thought it was easily the best Bohème I’ve ever seen because Guth’s approach, in addition to being so beautifully carried through, wiped out what usually makes Bohème a bit of a trial -- to cut corners, the 19th C sentimentalism (Mimi) and “student capers” (the boys).

        • manou

          How was Bernheim?

          • Promising. Overall it was a very good young cast. But you know the Bastille.

            • manou

              There seems to be a lot of press about him lately (maybe he has a new agent). I missed his Rodolfo here but he is doing it again in July, so will try to catch him then.

            • A very clear, straightforward voice and a lot of commitment on stage. But as with S. Yoncheva singing Elisabeth de Valois, I wondered if it wasn’t hitting the limit at the Bastille. It’s a tough place for young singers.

            • manou

              Yes -- the Bastille is an unfriendly space for most singers. Have checked and Bernheim is doing ONE matinée in July (with Simona Mihai -- a Jette Parker Young Artist here). Thanks for the report!

  • Rowna Sutin

    I could only watch act one and a bit of act 2 but i want to chime in and say that when you have stellar singers, they can sell anything that is reasonable. I bought into the concept about 5 minutes in. It was actually good! It sounded bad . . . so I came with an attitude, but I was won over quickly. Car is a superb Mimi. All the others were very good too.

  • The Dybbuk

    Well if it proves anything it is that Puccini is indestructible. Anyone taking him on does so at their own risk. Ready to howl with derision, as ever I just howled with tears of sadness for the bohemians and joy for Maestro Puccini. And the production was not the desecration I had expected. Anyone fancy suggesting a landing on the stage of the MET any time soon?

  • Actually, Guth’s production makes sense if you think of Tarkovsky’s masterpiece Solyaris (1972).
    And once you see it that way, it’s just incredibly beautiful.
    You can find the movie (with English subtitles) on Mosfilm’s YouTube channel.

    • No-one in my entourage has complained about it.

      • I’ve seen a lot of nasty comments and the public boo-ed at the beginning of the third act.

        • I have it this weekend.

        • Not one boo this evening. Just loud applause.