La Bohème Tour Will Begin in Summer 2004

News   La Bohème Tour Will Begin in Summer 2004 La Bohème, the striking and stirring new staging of the classic Puccini opera now playing on Broadway, will launch a national tour in summer 2004, director Baz Luhrmann told Playbill On-Line.
Baz Luhrmann directing on the set of the TV commercial shoot for his production of Puccini's La Boh
Baz Luhrmann directing on the set of the TV commercial shoot for his production of Puccini's La Boh (Photo by Lyn Hughes)

Luhrmann is currently in New York City casting for the road company. No specific cities have been announced for the tour, but the director said several are interested. In the coming weeks, he will travel from town to town to discover which theatres are suited to housing an engagement of the uniquely designed La Bohème.

As with the Broadway rendition, the tour will boast multiple casts taking on the roles of the four central lovers. In New York, David Miller, Jesús Garcia and Alfred Boe play Rodolfo in rep, opposite the rotating Mimis of Ekaterina Solovyeva, Lisa Hopkins and Wei Huang. Jessica Comeau and Chlöe Wright share Musetta opposite the Marcellos of Eugene Brancoveanu and Ben Davis.

Luhrmann wasn't certain whether the road company would also have three Rodolfos and Mimis. "It will have to be multiple casts. That is sure. But what were finding is certain players can sustain a little more and some a little less. It's going to be about individuals." Earlier, it had been announced that David Miller would be leaving the cast in April to star in an opera version of Margaret Edson's play Wit in Milan. Luhrmann revealed that Miller has opted to remain with the Broadway show.

The day after its Dec. 8 Broadway opening, La Bohème did close to $1 million in ticket sales, pointing the Italian-language Puccini classic down the road toward being a hit. As is the case with other shows, the opera took a hit at the box office with the advent of the recent musicians union strike, and now the war in Iraq. Luhrmann, responding to current events and their affect on Broadway said, "Snow. Strike. The war. Could you kick the theatre any more? But Broadway is incredibly resilient. Our world has such heaviness. It's time to get out and drink some wine, eat some food, see some theatre and have some life. There's always going to be conflict from now until we die, so let's get on with it."

"It's been a test for absolutely everybody," he continued. "It only shows that the work itself, the shows, the care and the passion have to be that much greater. You can't be in any way complacent about it."

Baz Luhrmann directing on the set of the TV commercial shoot for his production of Puccini's <i>La Boh</i>
Baz Luhrmann directing on the set of the TV commercial shoot for his production of Puccini's La Boh (Photo by Lyn Hughes)