CULTURE

Classic hit opens new season at the National Opera

The new season has started at the National Opera with one of last year’s successes. Puccini’s trademark opera «La Boheme,» directed by Graham Vick, first opened at the Olympia Theater last December. The production, for which the internationally acclaimed British director has transferred all the action to today’s Paris, reopened last Friday with performances scheduled for tomorrow, Saturday and October 21. Giacomo Puccini’s opera, which premiered on February 1896, is based on Henri Murger’s «Scenes de la vie de Boheme.» Depicting the bohemian lifestyle of a group of artists in Paris, the work focuses on the tumultuous relationship that develops between poet Rodolfo and seamstress Mimi. The libretto is by Luigi Illica and Giuseppe Giacosa. The National Opera production of «La Boheme» stars Elena Kelessidi as Mimi and tenor Sebastien Gueze alternating with Attalan Ayan as Rodolfo. Kyros Patsalidis stars as Marcello, Loukia Spanaki as Musetta, Akis Laloussis as Schaunard and Tassos Apostolou as Colline. The orchestra is conducted by Loukas Karytinos and the Manolis Kalomiris Children’s Choir is also participating. The sets are designed by Richard Hudson, a Tony as well as Laurence Olivier award recipient. The founder and artistic director of the Birmingham Opera Company, Graham Vick has worked in most leading opera houses across the world, from the Met in New York and Milan’s La Scala to Florence’s Maggio Musicale and the Shaftesbury in London’s West End. He has also collaborated with top vocalists and it should be noted that it was his production of Verdi’s «Falstaff» that marked the reopening of Covent Garden’s newly renovated Royal Opera House. The season will continue with Vassilis Nikolaidis’s take on Donizetti’s opera «Anna Bolena,» which will premiere this Friday, featuring opera singers Dimitris Kavrakos and Jenny Drivala and conductor Giorgos Petrou. Olympia Theater, 59-61 Academias, tel 210.361.2461.