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One of my favourite operas is “La Bohėme”.
I may have seen it five times, I may have seen it ten. I lost track.
Each production has captivated me.
On many levels.
The story: Love found. Love lost. Love extinguished. Love grieved.
Paris. 1896. A garret. Rooftops. Chimneys. Students. Mimi.
This past spring, 2009, I took a picture of Paris garrets from my room.
And I imagine the Italian composer, Puccini, composing the beautiful music based loosely upon a few stories about French students and a gypsy, living only in the Bohemian Paris of his imagination.
And I hear, like the echo of a dream, my father singing the famous Rudolfo aria from it while in the perfect acoustics of our small bathroom in Ireland: Che Gelida Manina: “Your tiny hand is frozen”.
Now and again, as the picture above flashes up on the slideshow in my sidebar, I think of all of this.
And it all makes a strange and lovely sense.