Rebecca Krouner is playing Marcello in our production of La Femme Bohème. While she has performed in a few other Puccini operas, she has not previously performed La Bohème. Since Puccini didn’t write much music for mezzo-sopranos, Rebecca is excited for this rare opportunity to sing the composer’s expressive melodic lines.
MWO: How do you see Marcello? How do you collaborate with Lindsay Conrad (also Marcello) in creating your characters?
REBECCA: Marcello has a lot of swagger and confidence. She’s a loyal friend and has a lot of compassion, even if she doesn’t always know how to express it. She can be very impulsive, and sometimes that gets her in trouble! I think you see that in Act III when Marcello has somewhat failed interactions with three other characters: she can’t really comfort Mimi, she gets testy with Rodolfo, and then she has a huge fight and breakup with Musetta. Marcello also grows throughout the opera; you see her act with more maturity and selflessness during the crisis of Act IV.
It’s great being double-cast with Lindsay! I learn a lot by watching her in rehearsal and I really admire the energy and humor that she brings to Marcello. We talk about the music, character and staging during breaks, and I definitely steal her ideas sometimes!
MWO: Do you have a favorite moment in the opera?
REBECCA: I love the end of Act II. There’s a great ensemble when Marcello joins in on Musetta’s melody and Mimi, Rodolfo, Schaunard, and Colline are all singing. It’s really satisfying musically and emotionally. I enjoy that whole act – it’s a big party!
MWO: What’s special about an all-female cast?
REBECCA: This cast definitely disproves the stereotype that women are hyper-competitive and overly critical of each other. It’s inspiring to come to rehearsal every night and be surrounded by such strong, talented, interesting women. I’m learning a lot from this group and I’m proud to be part of this production. This is also a really warm, supportive cast. People often arrive early to rehearsal just to hang out together. We also get a lot done during rehearsal – I don’t want to cast aspersions on any male singers, so I’ll just say that these rehearsals seem particularly focused and productive!