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Lyrical Opera Theater's La Boheme

La Bohème | April 2016

Opera in four acts, composed by Giacomo Puccini to an Italian libretto by Luigi Illica and Giuseppe Giacosa.


La Bohème graphic

Midvale Performing Arts Center, 695 W. Center St. (7720 S.), Midvale, UT

Watch now: CONTACT with Mary Dixon | Lyrical Opera Theater presents La Bohème | PBS


Act 1: Around 1830, in an old attic apartment in the Bohemian Quarter of Paris, a group of young artists are living together in poverty. On the night of Christmas Eve, they all intend to go to a bar, but Rodolfo wants to finish writing a poem. He promises to join the others soon and is left alone. A neighbor, the seamstress Mimi, knocks on Rodolfo's door seeking a light for her candle and introduces herself. The two of them fall in love.

Act 2: Rodolfo and Mimi join his friends at the Café Momus. The singer Musetta comes along accompanied by her elderly rich lover, Alcindoro. She spies her former lover, Marcello and abandons Alcindoro sending him off to buy her a new pair of shoes so she can join Marcello. The group enjoy a Christmas Eve meal then ditch the scene leaving the bill to be paid by Alcindoro for all of them.

Act 3: Time has passed, and it is now a cold winter morning. Mimi has lived with Rodolfo, but they quarrel because of his apparent jealousy. Mimi seeks out Marcello asking him why Rodolfo is recently so cold to her. The two hear Rodolfo coming, and Mimi hides. Rodolfo tells Marcello, "I love Mimi, but she has tuberculosis. I'm poor and feel like I'm killing her because I can't take care of her properly. I should say goodbye to her." Mimi, upon hearing this, begins sobbing and draws the attention of Rodolfo who tries to comfort her. Although they love each other they decide to live separately.

Act 4: After some time, the poor Bohemian artists once again live together in the old attic apartment. Musetta runs into their room bringing with her the dying Mimi whom they try to comfort. Mimi wants to die at Rodolfo's side. His friends go out to try to come up with the money to buy her medicine. Rodolfo and Mimi reminisce about their times together. Their friends come back with medicine but in vain. Mimi dies in Rodolfo's arms of the consumption that has racked her.


Lyrical Opera Theater engages local, internationally acclaimed, seasoned performers as well as young and upcoming talent.

Approximate Running Time: 2 hours, 40 minutes, with 2 intermissions


James Miller, Lyric Tenor

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Rodolfo in La Bohème

James Miller is a graduate of the University of Utah where he studied Musical Theater and received a Bachelors Degree in Fine Arts. Most recently, Mr. Miller performed Spoletta in Utah Opera's production of Tosca and Cavaradossi in Lyrical Opera Theater's production or Tosca. He has performed with Utah Opera on numerous occasions over the past twenty-seven years. With Arizona Opera he has sung Ferrando in Cosi Fan Tutte, Romeo in Romeo & Juliette, Des Grieux in Manon and Tamino in Magic Flute. Mr. Miller has performed with several other professional opera companies including Utah Festival Opera Company, Utah Lyric Opera, Tulsa Opera and Boise Opera. He has appeared with the Utah Symphony and the Nova Chamber Series on several occasions. Previous experience includes performances of Mozart's Requiem with the Utah Symphony and the Grand Junction Colorado Symphony, Haydn's Creation and Mendelssohn's Elijah with the Oratorio Society of Utah and Handel's Messiah and with the Oratorio Society of Utah, Utah Symphony Chorus and several community organizations.

Clara Hurtado Lee, Lyric Coloratura Soprano

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Mimi (April 30 and May 15) & Musetta (May 7 and 13) in La Bohème

Clara Hurtado Lee's warm and brilliant soprano encompasses the lyric coloratura repertoire. She performs with some of the Intermountain Region's leading music organizations including; Utah Symphony & Utah Opera, Salt Lake Choral Artists, Utah Lyric Opera, and The American West Symphony. She also performed internationally in Italy. Some favorite Opera roles include; Lucia, Pamina, Micaela, Susanna (Nozze), Musetta, Cupidon, Sophie (Rosenkavalier), Madame Herz and Adina.

Critics describe her singing as: sparkling, fluid, lyrical, emotionally-charged, and lovely. Clara won1st place in the 2014 NATSAA competition for the Cal-Western Region. She competed in Boston and was a National Semi-finalist, receiving the Harold Stark Award. Clara also shines as a frequent recitalist and concert soloist.

Lynnette Owens, Full Lyric Soprano

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Mimi in La Bohème

Carnegie Hall's packed house gave a 10-minute standing ovation and welcoming shouts when Lynnette Owens soloed in Mozart's Requiem and Vesperae solennes de confessore. She has thrilled audiences and critics alike with her operatic performances that have included Madama Butterfly in Puccini's Madama Butterfly, Minnie in Puccini's La Fanciulla del West, Mimi in Puccini's La Bohème, and Tosca in Puccini's Tosca amongst numerous others. She has performed with the Lyrical Opera Theater, Rome Festival Opera, Utah Symphony & Opera, Bleeker Street Opera in NYC, Amici Opera, Des Moines Metro Opera, Utah Festival Opera, Sarasota Opera, MidAmerica Productions, the American West Symphony and the Da Camera Choir and Symphony of Neuchâtel, Switzerland.

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Tyler Oliphant, Lyric Baritone

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Marcello in La Bohème

Tyler Oliphant is a confident and accomplished performer in every classical genre and style. From Bach to Mozart to Floyd, Britten, and Janacek, his "rich and expressive Baritone" is comfortable on both the opera or concert stage. He was heard on the international broadcast of Music and the Spoken Word with the Mormon Tabernacle Choir where he premiered Mack Wilberg's new Requiem under the baton of Craig Jessop. He was featured in the baritone solos in Haydn's Lord Nelson Mass with the Mormon Tabernacle Choir in as well.

He made his debut with Indianapolis Opera in the role of the Sergeant of Police for their production of The Pirates of Penzance in March 2009. He reprised this same role with Pacific Repertory Opera in September 2009. His most recent foray into this same Gilbert and Sullivan operetta was with the Hale Center Theatre in Utah where he did over 60 performances in the role of the Pirate King during the fall of 2010. He has performed numerous times with Utah Opera, including the 2012 season in their production of Rigoletto and continues to have a good relationship with that company. He was heard in the role of the Bonze in Madama Butterfly for Intermountain Opera in May 2012.

Julia Wentz, Lyric Coloratura Soprano

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Musetta: April 30 & May 15, in La Bohème

Soprano, Julia Wentz has sung classical music professionally for 15 years. Her varied repertoire includes opera, musical theater, classical art song, and jazz. In 2012, Julia received a degree in music performance from the University of Utah, where she studied with one of Utah's leading voice experts, soprano Professor Julie Wright Costa. Julia has performed opera roles in Utah and California, as well as Salzburg, Austria and a 2010 European deput in Italy in Verdi's La Traviata. Roles performed include Donna Anna from Mozart's Don Giovanni, Drusilla from Monteverdi's Coronation of Poppea, Susanna from Mozart's The Marriage of Figaro, Annina from Verdi's La Traviata and various solo performances in opera scenes and concert works.

William Goeglein, Bass Baritone

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Colline: in La Bohème

William Goeglein, Bass Baritone, studied in the east where he sang with the Philadelphia Lyric Opera, Bronx opera and Savoy Opera Company. William sang with Utah Opera Company for 16 years totaling 27 roles with that organization. Of his 35 operatic roles include Colline in La Bohème, Raimondo in Lucia di Lammermoor, Bartolo in Il Barbiere di Siviglia, Mustafà in L'italiana in Algeri, Alfonso in Cosi fan tutte and Leporello in Don Giovanni. His favorite pastime is fishing on his pontoon boat at Strawberry Reservoir.

Joshua Jensen, Baritone

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Schaunard: in La Bohème

Joshua Jensen, baritone, started singing at the age of 11, studying Italian Opera. When he was featured on Park City TV's morning show, the news team declared him the "8th wonder of the world." He sang the roles of the Imperial Commissario and Yamadori in Madama Butterfly and Sciarrone in Tosca with Lyrical Opera Theater. He has been a concert soloist in the Italian Festival, "Ferragosto" for ten years. He has sung for the Naturalization Oath Ceremony in Salt Lake City and sings frequently for military retirement ceremonies at Hill Air Force Base including for Colonel Christopher Kleinsmith, Master Sergeant Nicole Shinn and Master Sergeant Bernd Tripps. He appeared at the Hill Air Force Base assistance fund kickoff event with Miss Utah USA 2009 and with Miss Utah Teen USA 2009, the Community College of Air Force graduation and recently sang for the Mayor of West Valley City, Mike Windor, March 2013.

Ray Arbizu Jr., Lyric Tenor

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Benoit & Alcindoro in La Bohème

Ray Arbizu Jr., lyric tenor, grew up in both European and U.S. opera houses accompaning his famous father, the robust lyric tenor, Ray L. Arbizu, Sr., whose voice and talent Ray Jr. inherited. Ray sang with Lyrical Opera Theater as a concert soloist in the Festa Italiana and sang the role of Sharpless in LOT's Madama Butterfly. He has sung with Utah Opera and has thrilled audiences internationally as a concert soloist in Switzerland in venues including the Rotary Club, Catholic churches and festivals throughout Switzerland. He has been a concert soloist in the Messiah, with the Swiss Choir, various Italian Festivals and cantored for St. Lukes Episcopal church.

Sonja Jensen, Lyric Soprano

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Chorus in La Bohème

It has been said of Sonja Jensen, soprano, that she was "born for the stage. She has been involved in the performing world for many years thrilling audiences with vivid character portrayals and sultry singing. She recently performed the roles of Desdemona in Mad Mahoney and Rosy in Justice at the Gold Dust with Poison Ivy Mysteries and has been a concert soloist with Lyrical Opera Theater singing on their Heart's Song concert and in the Italian Festivals, Ferragosto and Festa Italiana.

Carolyn King, Mezzo Soprano

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Chorus in La Bohème

Holly Anderson, Mezzo Soprano

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Chorus in La Bohème

Holly Anderson, soprano, has performed in Utah and Idaho for 16 years. Her favorite roles include Belle in Beauty and the Beast Peter Pan in Peter Pan, Diana in Lend Me A Tenor, Annie Sullivan in The Miracle Worker, and Domina in A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum, where she met her husband George. By summer she and her husband own and operate the Cody Old Time Photo photo shop in Cody, Wyoming, and by day she teaches science at the Clark Planetarium.

Aleena Pedersen, Coloratura Soprano

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Chorus in La Bohème

Aleena Pedersen, Coloratura Soprano, has loved performing and being on the stage since childhood and is very excited to be part of Lyrical Opera Theater's production of La Bohème. She has studied privately under Linda Lee, Diana Walker Neve, Dave Schmidt, and currently Lynnette Owens. Some of the theatrical productions she has been in are Hello Dolly, Me and My Girl, Seven Brides for Seven Brothers, and Fame. She has also participated in the National Association of Teachers of Singing (NATS) competitions and placed first with her solos. She enjoys singing in the Witness Music of Utah Choir, and has performed in Rob Gardners Lamb of God the last two years. Other choral experience include Oratorio Society of Utah, Sterling Singers, and Kristiansand's Opera Choir in Norway as a soloist. Her favorite performing memories include her solo concert produced to raise money for mothers and children in South Africa, as well as singing in the men and women's units at the Utah State Prison. Aleena's greatest joy is being mother of seven alongside her best friend and soul mate Trond, and thanks them for their endless support.

River Lundskog, Soprano

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Chorus in La Bohème

River Lundskog, soprano, has been involved with theatre and acting for about two years. During such time she has brought several well-known and loved characters to life, including; Fiona in Shrek Jr., The Master Toymaker in Babes in Toyland, Mrs. Meers and Miss Flannery in Thoroughly Modern Millie Jr., Cheshire Cat in Alice in Wonderland Jr., Sebastian in The Little Mermaid Jr., and a Geisha in Lyrical Opera Theatre's former production of Madama Butterfly. Over the course of this time River's deep-rooted passion for acting has only grown stronger, making her dream of sharing her beautiful vision with the world through performances on both the HOLLYWOOD big screen and BROADWAY even more powerful. She thanks each of those cherished individual's that have encouraged, supported, and inspired her along this challenging and eventful journey.

Abram Clements, Baritone

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Chorus in La Bohème

Abram Clements, baritone, has been playing the piano since he was 8 years old. He began the tuba in middle school, where he excelled and joined the Lyceum Philharmonic at the American Heritage School. He was a part of recording two albums, one of which was a top ranked album in the classical music genre on iTunes. He also sang in the Salt Lake Children's Choir for 2 years under the direction of Ralph Woodward.

Tahlia Schindler, Soprano

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Children's Chorus in La Bohème

Tahlia Schindler age 11, is a 5th grader at The McGillis School. She enjoys singing and has been a vocal student of Lynnette Owens for almost 2 years. She was a featured performer at the Utah Democratic fundraiser "Garden Party" in 2015. She has studied violin since the age of 5 and is currently a student at the Gifted Music School in Salt Lake City. She enjoys singing in monthly master classes and performing in her school talent shows held annually. She has participated in many violin recitals and concerts through her affiliation with the Gifted Music School. She was a member of the Alta ski racing team for 2 years and medaled in the Slalom event in 2014 at the age of 9. She enjoys skiing, rock climbing, horseback riding, and mountain biking with her family and friends.

Jamie Forchic, Soprano

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Children's Chorus in La Bohème

Jamie Forchic, Soprano, is eleven years old and has been singing and playing the piano under the tutelage of Lynnette Owens for four years. She sang the roll of the Shepherdess in Lyrical Opera Theater's Tosca. She has also been dancing since the age of four. Jamie loves all forms of artistic expression and is a talented visual artist as well. She is currently in sixth grade, a disciplined student who also loves animals, being out in nature, reading and spending time with her family.

Esther Clements, Soprano

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Children's Chorus in La Bohème

Esther Clements, soprano, has been playing the piano since she was 6 years old. She started singing in the Salt Lake Children's Choir when she was 7 years old. She sang there for two years. She then sang in the American Heritage Children's choir for one year. She has recently begun taking voice lessons with Lynnette Owens and is constantly singing in her home.

Emma Clements, Soprano

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Children's Chorus in La Bohème

Emma Clements, soprano, has sung with the American Heritage Children's Choir and the Salt Lake Children's Choir. She has been taking piano lessons for several years and enjoys playing duets. She also enjoys singing and playing outside with her friends.

Caylee Caldwell

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Waitress & Stagehand in La Bohème

Caylee Shea Caldwell is an eighth grader at Salt Lake Arts Academy where she has played such diverse roles as the evil Duke of Cornwall in King Lear and the feisty Marianne in Sense and Sensibility. She is now trying her hand at directing Poe's Telltale Heart. Her past performances include the lead, as well as many other roles, in Salt Lake Dance Center's The Night Before Christmas ballet, Carnival Cruise Line shows, and company jazz team and ballet solo competitions. She also competed for Black Diamond Sports Center gymnastics team for four years and now spends her time training for Ute Crossfit teen competitions. She will be attending the Salt Lake School for the Performing Arts in the fall and is incredibly thankful for the opportunity to be a part of Lyrical Opera Theater.

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