BWW Reviews: LA BOHEME at Amora Opera: Small Company, Huge Voices
With a lobby full of regulars and home made treats for sale, who wouldn't feel at home attending Amore Opera's production of La Bohème? This patchwork company, with Nathan Hull as President, is in their fourth season of what appears to be a very closely-knit group of performers and musicians. Having the pleasure to speak with Nathan Hull on Thursday evening I was even extended the invitation to come back and perform with the company. Their sense of community and drive to produce quality opera for their friends and family was great to see in the midst of this holiday season.
As soon as the curtain opened on this Puccini classic I was immediately drawn into the passionate performances given onstage. The vocal prowess of the Amore Opera singers was superb with rich nuance and controlled power behind the voices. Jonathan Winell played the commanding role of Rodolfo with a generously sized voice to produce clarion top notes. Na Li Youm also performed with great range as Mimi. Showing dexterity in the role, she sang with ease and beauty. Julia Lima, Musetta, played the impassioned, volatile role with astonishing power and great musical expertise. The chorus produced a great bustling Café Momus scene of Act 2. Even the box office manager that had helped me an hour earlier made an appearance onstage.
A large orchestra accompanied the cast for the production. David Stech, the music director, had a few musical issues keeping the orchestra and cast together but accompanied the singers well overall. The scenic elements, designed by Richard Cerullo and gifted from their parent company, Amato Opera, worked well for the production. La Bohème is a sentimental show for the company as it was their debut show four years ago when the company began.
Be sure to catch Amore Opera's production of La Bohème. Running through next weekend the company offers both the full-length version as well as an abridged 90 minute version for children. Don't miss it!
220 East Fourth Street,
(888) 811-4111, amoreopera.org
Through Jan. 6 (with different casts)