Opera Update- Purchased a subscription to this year's Houston Grand Opera. Have went to two performances so far.
The first was Rossini's The Italian Girl in Algiers. Very good performances by the lead tenors, as well as creative costuming and set design. Lots of laughs mixed in with an engaging story really kept the audience's attention. Was really impressed how that the costumes and set arrangements could completely change what you got out of the performance, even though the music and singing was unchanged.
The second was Puccini's La Boheme. The lead tenor was ill and a substitute was flown in from the Met in NY. Can't recall his name, but he was outstanding especially under the circumstances and last minute preparations.
After the aria sung by the lead soprano who played the character Mimi I was struck by how many in attendance were moved to tears (me included). This aria has always stirred my emotions even before I had the Italian verses translated to English, and understood what she was saying.
Here is a clip I found that has the English subtitles