Guides for Musicals, Plays, Operas & Operettas

Read expert-written show guides with context, plot, characters and video examples.

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La Bohème

A group of friends are living a bohemian life in Paris and trying to make their livings creating art. Rodolfo, the writer, falls in love with the seamstress, Mimi, while Marcello, the painter, and Musetta, the singer, are the on-and-off-again couple by their sides. When the four are happy, they... read more

Carmen

Famous for its use of Spanish dances, such as the and , Carmen has some of the most well-known music of the operatic canon.When the seductive Spanish gypsy, Carmen, shows an interest in Don José, he initially dismisses it, intending to honor his promise to the village girl Micaëla. There is some... read more

Aida (Opera)

A tragic tale of forbidden love, Aida follows the struggle of the Ethiopian princess, Aida, and the young Egyptian warrior, Radamès, to decide between love or loyalty to their countries. Aida has been captured by the Egyptians, who do not know her true identity, and is being held as a slave. She... read more

Porgy and Bess

Porgy and Bess tells the story of the unshakeable love between Porgy, a crippled beggar, and Bess, a beautiful woman haunted by the demons of her past. The tight-knit African-American community of Catfish Row is shocked when Crown, Bess’ brutal, violent lover, murders Robbins during a craps game.... read more

Antigonae

The opera begins in the early morning following a battle in Thebes between the armies of the two sons of Oedipus: Eteocles and Polynices. King Creon, who ascended the throne of Thebes after both brothers are killed in battle, decrees that Polynices is not to be buried. Antigone, his sister, defie... read more

Otello

Based on the famous play by Shakespeare, Verdi’s Otello follows the story of the happy couple, Otello, the governor of Cyprus and Venetian general, and Desdemona as they are dragged through an evil plot constructed by Iago. Iago is the slighted ensign of Otello, who has been passed over for a pro... read more

Così fan tutte

A hilarious farce, Così fan tutte revolved around a bet made among three men; Don Alfonso, the older and more cynical of the bunch, bets Ferrando and Guglielmo that he can prove that their girlfriends, Fiordiligi and Dorabella, are unfaithful like all women. Don Alfonso, with the help of Despina,... read more

Don Giovanni

The famous tale of Don Giovanni centers around the womanizing libertine and his conquests. Don Giovanni sneaks into Il Commendatore’s house, with his side kick, Leporello, standing guard and attempts to rape or seduce his daughter, Donna Anna. Upon fleeing, after Donna Anna screams, Don Giovanni... read more

Tosca

A tragic and political love story, Tosca explores how love overcomes all. Mario Cavaradossi, a painter, is deeply in love with Floria Tosca, a famous singer. Cavaradossi helps aid his friend Angelotti who is being pursued by the Chief of Police, Scarpia. He bursts in the church where Cavaradossi... read more

Madama Butterfly

This tragic tale revolves around the young Japanese geisha, Butterfly. She is to be married to Pinkerton, an American Officer on assignment in Nagasaki. Butterfly is young and naive, and fully believes her marriage to Pinkerton to be true and everlasting, while Pinkerton intends on marrying an Am... read more