The cast album of the American debut of Baz Luhrmann's theatrical reimagining of La Bohème, the 1896 Puccini opera, will hit stores Dec. 10 on the DreamWorks Records label.
Veteran opera producer David Frost is producing the original Broadway cast recording. The company of the Broadway-bound production, now in tryout in San Francisco, is currently recording the album at George Lucas' Skywalker Ranch, in Marin County, CA. Performances continue to Nov. 10 at the Curran Theatre in San Francisco prior to a first Broadway preview of Nov. 29 at the Broadway Theatre.
"The album will reflect the show in a unique arrangement that features three separate casts performing the principal roles of the poet Rodolfo and his fragile lover Mimi," according to the album announcement Oct. 16. All six leads — triple cast due to the vocal demands of the roles — will apparently be represented on the album, as will the actor singers who are double-cast in the roles of Musetta and Marcello. It was not immediately clear if this meant listeners would get, in effect, three albums — three documents of the major musical sequences — or if the sequences would be parceled out to the couples evenly. It was also not immediately clear if the release one or two discs.
The roles will be heard "equally" on the recording, according to the announcement. Mimi is portrayed alternately by Lisa Hopkins, Wei Huang and Ekaterina Solovyeva; Rodolfo is portrayed alternately by Alfred Boe, Jesus Garcia and David Miller. Musetta is sung alternately by Jessica Comeau and Chloe Wright; Marcello is sung alternately by Ben Davis and Eugene Brancoveanu. The company totals about 50. Luhrmann's version was a wild success in Australia in 1990 and in revivals in the 1990s. He sets the show in 1957 Paris rather than the early 19th century of the original.
The music director is Constantine Kitsopoulos. For more information, visit www.dreamworksrecords.com.