I really felt like I was in Paris, suffering with the likes of Rodolfo (Ramón Vargas), Mimi (Maija Kovalevska), and Marcello (Peter Mattei) without feeling sorry for them. The sweet melodies and ambient lighting left me drifting in my thoughts about the current state of the arts (read this for fodder). I could not help but think how much the impressive sets and costumes must have cost and how they were able to pay the 100 people who showed up on stage in Act II. Not to mention the world class orchestra and the countless staff. And then I looked around the lavish opera house and realized that I was sitting in a packed house filled with wealthy people with their Chanel bags, pavé earrings, and fur coats who had most likely paid a pretty penny for their seats. Just think of the irony in the amount of money that was spent to make an opera about impoverished artists. Amazing.
All in all, I must say that it was nice to see a piece of work that was perfectly lavish without being overdone. The music, the singing and the atmosphere were spot-on.