I just returned from the first opera in my series for this year. It was La Boheme and I enjoyed it. Not the best opera I’ve ever seen, but good nonetheless. I’ve decided that great operas have three things going for them, great music/singing, a great story and great sets. This one only had great sets. They were truly beautiful. The story is dumb, boy meets girl, they fall in love, girl dies. Nothing too interesting there. The singers were good, but not great. I had a hard time hearing them, at times, over the orchestra. Great singers are always easily heard. Still, overall I enjoyed it. It’s not like I left early. Though, this one had two intermissions and as far as I can tell, they were to change the very elaborate set, which was very cool. The sequence was the first two acts, intermission, the third act, intermission, the fourth act. The third and fourth acts seemed really short to me, but that’s all they needed before changing sets. So that’s the way it goes.

The scripted bows bugged me as usual. I applauded when all the players came out at the end. I even stuck around and applauded when they came out (again) individually. After that, I was ready to go. The nice people sitting next to me sensed that and offered to let me out, which I gladly accepted. I really hate scripted bows. I guess you should just be thankful for whatever applause is given. This individual and repeat bows just seem like you’re begging the audience for more applause. I don’t mind applauding, but it seems like every single performance, people are giving standing ovations. How then, does one reward a performance that is truly, truly amazing? I guess I’m saving my standing ovations for something else.