La Boheme opens Friday

Juneau Lyric Opera will present “La Bohème” this weekend, with shows continuing through Dec. 2.

JLO first produced “La Bohème” in 2000, selling out all the shows at that time; they brought it back this year after asking Juneau audiences what they’d like to see repeated — “La Bohème” was by far the top choice.

“La Bohème” is one of the most popular operas of all time, and Puccini’s fourth. Set in Paris in the 1830s, the story focuses on a community of Parisian artists, and explores themes of love and friendship. It is often cited as being accessible to a wide audience, appealing to both opera fans and those who know little about the form.

This year’s production marks the directorial debut of Dan Wayne, a highly regarded local singer who played the lead role of Rodolfo in the previous production opposite his wife, Kathleen Wayne. Their roles are filled this time around by Anne Weske as Mimi and Derrick Grimes as Rodolfo.

Other members of the current cast who appeared in the first production are Brett Crawford (Marcello) and Wade Rogers (Schaunard). Other cast members are Ryan Curley, Odin Brudie and Emily Smith.

William Todd Hunt returns as musical director, and Sue Kazama will be back at the piano. Alan Davis is the producer.

The opera will be performed Friday and Saturday at McPhetres Hall in Holy Trinity Church, 325 Gold St. It continues next weekend, Nov. 25-26, and the following Thursday and Friday, Dec. 1-2. All shows begin at 7:30 p.m.

Tickets are available at www.juneauopera.org, Hearthside Books, Rainy Retreat Books, Juneau Arts and Culture Center and at the door.

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