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WEB EXTRA: Lyric's Artistic Director Talks Casting

Ward Holmquist, Artistic Director
photo: courtesy of the Lyric Opera of Kansas City
Ward Holmquist, Artistic Director

The Lyric Opera of Kansas City's Artistic Director Ward Holmquist calls La boh?me "one of the great operas of the Western world." Holmquist says when the Lyric discussed presenting the work again, he was "revitalized" by the film Rent to consider casting younger performers.

By Laura Spencer


Kansas City, MO – Holmquist says, "I had in my head the wonderful images of the Chris Columbus film images of Rent. One of the things that I found so moving was the way that they had such high musical values and transitioned in and out of musical dialogue and story so well. And it made me think again about the original opera and how viable it was and how tightly written it is...How much hope there is in it. And how much life and how much joy and the joy of youth in following your artistic dreams. That was one of the things in terms of the casting that I wanted to see if we could find that again in this production."

Kansas City is known for its style of jazz, influenced by the blues, as the home of Walt Disney’s first animation studio and the headquarters of Hallmark Cards. As one of KCUR’s arts reporters, I want people here to know a wide range of arts and culture stories from across the metropolitan area. I take listeners behind the scenes and introduce them to emerging artists and organizations, as well as keep up with established institutions. Send me an email at lauras@kcur.org or follow me on Twitter @lauraspencer.
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