“Life in the garrets of 1830s Paris was cold and lonely for the city’s young bohemians,” writes Judy Harrison in a review of the Bangor Symphony Orchestra’s semi-staged production of La Bohème in Wednesday’s (4/27) Bangor Daily News (Maine). “Their joys and sorrows delighted the sold-out audience Sunday at the Collins Center for the Arts as the Bangor Symphony Orchestra marked its 120th anniversary with a production of the opera La Bohème. It was the first time the BSO has presented an opera complete with costumes and sets. [Music Director] Lucas Richman and his staff spent a year planning the production of Giacomo Puccini’s well-known musical saga. The orchestra, singers and designers joined forces to create an enchanting production that rarely faltered. It was a lovely and much-appreciated gift for the symphony’s loyal supporters and the community. Director Loren Lester and Richman cleverly conceived a production that emphasized music over spectacle and emotion above pageantry.” Soprano Emily Birsan’s “beautifully balanced voice so charmed theatergoers that some wept at Mimi’s demise. [John] Bellemer’s tenor voice was strong, resonant and charming” as Rodolfo. “La Bohème was a triumph for Richman and the BSO.” 

Posted April 29, 2016

Pictured: The Bangor Symphony Orchestra’s La Bohème, with Eric Mihan as Colline (left), Aaron Engebreth as Schaunard (center), and Dan Kempson as Marcello (right). Photo by Brian Hinrichs