La bohème – Puccini

‘There is an excellent new translation by Amanda and Anthony Holden which reflects quite uncannily the rise and fall of the Puccini’s phrases.’

‘….a much-needed and excellent new translation by Amanda & Anthony Holden; clear, faithful, perceptive yet also cleverly cross-rhymed. A triumph.’

Amanda first translated this most well-known of operas with Anthony Holden for David Freeman’s 1987 production at Opera North, though Graham Vick’s Birmingham Opera Company, then confusingly called English Touring Opera, gave its first performances on tour earlier that year.

The translation subsequently had several outings; Amanda wrote an alternative version (with reduced chorus in acts II & III) for English Touring Opera in 1994.

Amanda most recently overhauled the text substantially for the production by Jonathan Miller currently in the English National Opera repertoire and available on DVD.

Aria – In povertà mia lieta…

I’m poor but I’m contented,
this is the life I treasure,
writing poems for pleasure.. .
In dreams or flights of fancy
and castles in the air,
I am a multi-millionaire.

But thought has been distracted
by two beautiful eyes
to which I find myself attracted;
they entered here when you did
and all my usual daydreams,
all those futile ambitions, faded into the night;
but I can live without them…

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