A century later, Jonathan Larson (based on an idea by Billy Aronson) wrote
, a rock opera/musical combining stories from his life in New York with characters and themes from Puccini’s opera.
Starting this weekend in Charleston, you can experience the New York version of bohemian life – the Charleston Light Opera Guild's production of Rent opens on Friday.*
Ryan Hardiman** is one of the stars of the show. He plays the musician Roger (transformed from Puccini’s character, the writer Rodolfo), who struggles with life, love, addiction, and artistic expression.
Hardiman sat down in the studio with me for a fun, wandering discussion of the parallels between La Bohème and Rent. We touched on the similarities and differences between characters, plot lines, and overall messages, and there's some music from both shows woven into the discussion.
Sound interesting? I have a pair of tickets to opening night (this Friday, July 31st) to give away. To be considered for these free tickets, e-mail me, and put “Classically Speaking” in the subject line.
You can find more information about the production here.
* Disclosure: I’ve played in the orchestra for several of the Charleston Light Opera Guild’s previous shows. But I’m pretty sure I’ve written this post because it’s a fun topic, not because of my involvement with the group.
** Ryan Hardiman was interviewed previously on Classically Speaking, as the WV Symphony Idol.