Music: Return Engagement

It was the custom at the Turin Royal Theater to keep the electric lights burning in the house so that the audience could follow their scores and see to eat their box lunches. But for the first performance of La Bohème, young (28), bristle-haired Conductor Arturo Toscanini ordered the house lights turned out. Further, he instructed his Mimi (Soprano Cesira Ferrani) to stay in character once she started to succumb to consumption in Rodolfo's drafty garret in Act IV; there would be no rolling around in the creaky bed for encores.

Despite some indignation over this devotion to Composer Giacomo Puccini's realism...

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