Photo by The Pirates of Penzance, 2017. Photo by Cory Weaver.

La bohème

Saturday, November 9, 2019 | 7:30 PM
Wednesday, November 13, 2019 | 7:30 PM
Friday, November 15, 2019 | 7:30 PM
Sunday, November 17, 2019 | 2:00 PM

Composer Giacomo Puccini
Librettists Luigi Illica & Giuseppe Giacosa
Conductor David Charles Abell
Director Kathleen Smith Belcher


Approximate running time is 2 hours, 40 minutes with two intermissions.

Love is fleeting. Lovers even more so.

Paris is for lovers…Puccini is for opera lovers. At the crossroads, an unrivaled romance sets bright bohemian rhapsodies against a tragic trajectory, blending into one of opera’s quintessential tearjerkers.

It’s here, on a brisk, candlelit night, that a young seamstress loses her keys and finds the love of her life.

The merciless winter chill seeps and creeps through the couple’s drafty dwelling until it permeates their hearts, replacing hope and happiness with doubt and jealousy. The two lovers are finally reunited – and their love rekindled – by a tragic turn of a events that ultimate leaves one of them consumed by grief, and the other by consumption.

C’est la vie. C’est l’amour. C’est l’opera.

UNDERSTAND EVERY WORD: La bohème will be sung in Italian, with English subtitles.

Arrive early to enjoy a FREE PRE-OPERA TALK before each Lyric Opera performance at the Kauffman Center. Pre-opera talks start one hour before curtain and last about 30 minutes.

La bohème is sponsored by Mr. & Mrs. C. Humbert Tinsman, Jr.
This project is supported in part by the City of Kansas City, Missouri Neighborhood Tourist Development Fund.



At Ease with Opera - free lectures

The Kansas City Lyric Opera Guild presents At Ease with Opera, a series of lectures focused on each mainstage Lyric Opera production. Admission is free and open to everyone.

Most “At Ease” events take place at the Kauffman Foundation, 4801 Rockhill Rd, Kansas City, MO 64110, but there are occasional exceptions.

Bohemians in opera and…
MONDAY, October 21, 7:00 PM

Who were the Bohemians and why were they so romanticized by 19th-century artists of all kinds? Why do we continue to find them so fascinating today? Don Dagenais, a Lyric Opera preview speaker, will explore the Bohemians and their reflections in art and culture, particularly in opera. Learn about some hidden gems, such as a zarzuela by Vives, a novel by George Sand, and paintings by Picasso and Renoir, among others.
RSVP requested but not required. Scroll down a bit to RSVP.


The unknown Puccini
MONDAY, October 28, 7:00 PM

Although La bohème was Puccini’s first big hit, it was not his first opera. Opera mavens Bob Wise and Don Dagenais guide you on an exploration of his earlier works which have never achieved the great popularity of La bohème or Tosca, but which contain some startlingly beautiful music and highly dramatic scenes. See how Puccini’s compositional skill matured, and how he developed a liking for certain kinds of melodramatic operatic plots.
RSVP requested but not required. Scroll down a bit to RSVP.


The folly of youth
MONDAY, November 4, 7:00 PM

Join William Everett of UMKC Conservatory to explore La bohème, including a discussion of Murger’s The Bohemians of the Latin Quarter and its vivid descriptions of carefree young artists, and then focusing on its two principal romances, Rodolfo and Mimi and Marcello and Musetta. Everett also looks as the ways La bohème has entered popular culture, including 1930s Hollywood cinema and its famous theatrical sibling, the Broadway musical Rent.
RSVP requested but not required. RSVP below.


RSVP - At Ease With Opera: La bohème

Friday Fanfare - date night package

Make Friday evening at La bohème special with one of our convenient Friday Fanfare packages!

Choose the Friday, November 15 performance and select the $159 Classic package that includes good seats, or the $259 Deluxe package that includes better seats.

Both Classic and Deluxe packages include:

  • a pre-opera 3-course meal for two at one of our restaurant partners
  • parking in the Kauffman Center garage (for one vehicle)
  • ticketing fees.

Purchase your preferred package, make your dinner reservations, and you’re all set. It’s a great value, so quantities are limited. Advance purchase only; we recommend at least 10 days in advance.

Click here for more details and to purchase a Friday Fanfare package.

"Bohemian Rhapsodies" at KC Library - free event

Bohemian Rhapsodies

a free event at KC Library, Plaza Branch
4801 Main Street, KCMO 64112

Entrancing operagoers since its 1896 premiere, Puccini’s La bohème remains one of the world’s most popular operas. Henri Murger’s novel Scènes de la vie de bohème inspired not only Puccini but Leoncavallo, plus composers of operetta and zarzuela – and the creators of the Broadway musical RENT.

Explore the enduring charm of the music and Murger’s immortal Bohemians, with David Charles Abell, conductor of Lyric Opera’s La bohème, along with special live musical performances from Lyric Opera’s cast.

RSVP at (816) 471-7344 during office hours or complete the form below.

RSVP - Bohemian Rhapsodies at KC Library

Photo Gallery


Georgy VasilievRodolfo – Georgy Vasiliev
Tenor Georgy Vasiliev returns to the Lyric in La bohème, most recently seen here as Pinkerton in Madama Butterfly (2018). Originally trained as a choral conductor in Moscow, his repertoire includes the Duke in Rigoletto, Lensky in Eugene Onegin, Edgardo in Lucia di Lammermoor, Romeo in Romeo et Juliette, the title role in Faust, Alfredo in La traviata, Vladimir in Prince Igor, and Nemorino in The Elixir of Love. Vasiliev is a frequent concert soloist at the Bolshoi Theatre in Moscow, Deutsche Oper Berlin, Grand-Théâtre de Genève, Opera Australia, and others. He has sung at international festivals throughout the world, performing in Rachmaninoff’s The Bells, Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9, Bruckner’s Te Deum, and Janàček’s The Eternal Gospel, among others.

Mimì – Raquel GonzálezRaquel González
Raquel González returns to Lyric Opera, most recently seen here as Tatiana in Eugene Onegin (2017). Recent engagements include Liù in Turandot at New Orleans Opera; Anna Sørensen in Silent Night at Washington National Opera; Micaëla in Carmen at North Carolina Opera; First Lady in The Magic Flute at The Glimmerglass Festival and Opera Theatre of Saint Louis; The Sandman in Hansel and Gretel with Washington National Opera; Tatiana in Eugene Onegin at Atlanta Opera; Violetta in La traviata at Opera on the James and Syracuse Opera; Cio-Cio San in Madama Butterfly at Central City Opera, and Mimì in La bohème at Opera Tampa and The Glimmerglass Festival.

Timothy RennerMarcello – Timothy Renner *
Baritone Timothy Renner debuts with Lyric Opera in La bohème. Recent engagements include Alidoro in La cenerentola at Bob Jones University, Eisenstein in Die Fledermaus at Vero Beach Opera, Germont in La traviata with Opera Columbus, and Zurga in Carmen with Opera Tampa. While studying at The Academy of Vocal Arts, he performed as Conte di Luna in Il Trovatore, the title role in Rigoletto, Alberich in Das Rheingold and Harlequin in Ariadne auf Naxos. Concert performances include Carmina Burana and Fantasia on Christmas Carols with Eastern Symphony Orchestra, and soloist in Bach’s St. Matthew Passion with Sinfonia de Camera. Upcoming role debuts include the lead role in Pelleas et Melisande, Valentin in Faust, and Escamillo in Carmen.

Sylvia D'EramoMusetta – Sylvia D’Eramo *
Soprano Sylvia D’Eramo debuts with Lyric Opera in La bohème. D’Eramo was part of the Benenson Young Artist Program at Palm Beach Opera, where her appearances included Adele in the family performance of Die Fledermaus. Other recent engagements include a return to Santa Fe as an Apprentice in Summer 2019; soprano soloist in Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9 with the Glens Falls Symphony Orchestra and Yale Philharmonia; and Pamina in The Magic Flute, Fiordiligi in Così fan tutte, and Gretel in Hansel and Gretel with Yale Opera. In concert, she also appeared with the Marvin Concert Series for Verdi’s Requiem.

Christian ZarembaColline – Christian Zaremba
Bass Christian Zaremba returns to Lyric Opera for La bohème, most recently seen here as Nourabad in The Pearl Fishers (2019). Other recent engagements include a debut at The Metropolitan Opera as Angelotti in Tosca; Zuniga in Carmen at Austin Opera; Sparafucile in Rigoletto at Michigan Opera Theatre; Colline in La bohème with Opera Omaha and Portland Opera; Jake Wallace in La fanciulla del West at Opera Omaha; Commendatore in Don Giovanni with Venture Opera; Master Fal in the U.S. Premiere of La mère coupable with On Site Opera, and, at Wolf Trap Opera, Collatinus in The Rape of Lucretia and Bartolo in The Marriage of Figaro.

Schaunard – Hadleigh Adams *
Baritone Hadleigh Adams debuts with Lyric Opera in La bohème. Recent highlights include Ormonte in Partenope, Paris in Romeo and Juliette, Schaunard in La bohème, and Angelotti in Tosca with San Francisco Opera; Nicomedes in Young Caesar with Los Angeles Philharmonic; Guglielmo in Così fan tutte at Pittsburgh Opera; Hawkins Fuller in Fellow Travelers at Minnesota Opera; Falke in Die Fledermaus at Cincinnati Opera; Creon/Tiresias in Oedipus Rex with The London Philharmonia Orchestra; Christ in Jonathan Miller’s staged production of St. Matthew Passion; Zoroastro in Handel’s Orlando at WhiteBox Theater, and Carl-Magnus in A Little Night Music at Nederlandse Reisopera.

Benoit/Alcindoro – Jake Gardner *
Jake Gardner debuts with Lyric Opera in La bohème. Recent engagements include Judge Turpin in Sweeney Todd and Prince Gremin in Eugene Onegin with Houston Grand Opera; Benoit/Alcindoro in La bohème with Florida Grand Opera and Hawaii Opera Theater; The Hermit in Die Freischutz and Ashby in La Fanciulla del West at Virginia Opera; Scarpia in Tosca with Piedmont Opera; Bartolo in The Barber of Seville at Eugene Opera; Sulpice in Daughter of the Regiment with Hawaii Opera Theater; Baron Zeta in The Merry Widow with Los Angeles Opera, and Buffalo Bill in Annie Get Your Gun at Glimmerglass Festival.

Parpignol – Thomas Drew ~

Custom-House Officer – Matthew Black

Sergeant – Robert H. Riordan ~

Prune Man – Trent J. Green

* Lyric Opera Debut
+ LOKC Resident Artist
~ LOKC Apprentice Artist
@ Former LOKC Resident Artist

Creative Team

Conductor David Charles Abell
Director Kathleen Smith Belcher
Set Designer R. Keith Brumley
Lighting Designer Ken Smith
Wig & Makeup Designer David Zimmerman
Chorus Master Piotr Wisniewski


* Lyric Opera Debut

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