Classical Notes

Curtain rises on Irish National Opera’s beloved Bohemians

The longevity of Puccini’s La Bohème is down to its timeless appeal, full of recognisable people and situations

Pianist Joe O’Grady, winner of the 2023 Frank Maher Classical Music Awards, the country’s largest such competition for secondary schools. Picture: Peter Houlihan

La Bohème is back, because it has never gone away

Dear readers, I have a book – which you are unlikely to have – called (rather blandly) Favourite Operas, which was written by a gentleman named J Cuthbert Hadden and published in 1910. It does what it says on the tin regarding all of the operas that we now know and love so well, and I bought it second-hand for one shilling and sixpence from ...