La Boheme, act III December 26, 2006Posted by Jeff in Italian, La Boheme, Opera, Theater.
If Teresa Stratas seems more physically suited to play the roles of consumptives than most sopranos (Boheme and La Traviata), it’s because she suffered from asthma as a child.
At dawn on the snowy outskirts of Paris, a customs official (James Brewer) admits farm women to the city.
Late merrymakers are heard within a tavern. Soon Mimì wanders in, searching for the place where Marcello and Musetta now live. When the painter emerges, she tells him of her distress over Rodolfo’s incessant jealousy; it is best that they part, she says.
Rodolfo, who has been asleep in the tavern, is heard, and Mimì hides nearby, although Marcello thinks she is gone. The poet tells Marcello that he wants to separate from his fickle sweetheart.
Pressed for the real reason, Rodolfo breaks down, saying that her coughing can only grow worse in the poverty they share.
Overcome with tears, Mimì stumbles forth to bid her lover farewell (“Addio! … Donde lieti usci”), as Marcello runs back into the tavern on hearing Musetta’s laughter.
While Mimì and Rodolfo recall past happiness, Musetta dashes out of the inn, quarrelling with Marcello who has caught her flirting (“Addio dolce svegliare”). The painter and his mistress part, hurling insults at each other, but Mimì and Rodolfo decide to remain together until spring.