Milwaukee Ballet
Press Release

Milwaukee Ballet opens 2017-18 season with Michael Pink’s La Bohème

Giacomo Puccini’s greatest opera presented as a ballet, Nov 2-5

By - Oct 16th, 2017 04:07 pm
Annia Hidalgo and Timothy O'Donnell. Photo by Mark Frohna.

Annia Hidalgo and Timothy O’Donnell. Photo by Mark Frohna.

MILWAUKEE – October 16, 2017 – Milwaukee Ballet opens its 2017-18 season with Artistic Director Michael Pink’s celebrated adaptation of Giacomo Puccini’s La Bohème. The ballet takes the stage November 2-5, 2017 at the Marcus Center for the Performing Arts.

La Bohème remains one of the world’s most popular operas, inspiring generations of artists. Puccini’s saga of Mimi and Rodolfo, and their community of bohemians inspired many adaptations, most notably the musical RENT. Master storyteller Michael Pink created one of the first full-length ballet versions of the opera, which made its world premiere in Milwaukee in 2012.

La Bohème is one of the greatest love stories ever told. I’m grateful for the opportunity to revisit this beautiful score and delve further into the characters with the Company,” said Milwaukee Ballet Artistic Director Michael Pink. “This story about young artists defying convention and seeking a life creating beauty translates so well on our dancers, who are themselves bohemian in spirit, carefree, and dedicated to their artform.”

Pink transported the story from the 1890s to the 1950s in hopes the audience would better engage with a setting closer to present-day.

La Bohème features Puccini’s iconic score, which has been adapted for dance by Music Director Andrews Sill. Sill will conduct the Milwaukee Ballet Orchestra for this engagement.

Principal Cast

Rodolfo: Davit Hovhannisyan | Patrick Howell

Mimi: Luz San Miguel | Nicole Teague-Howell

Marcello: Timothy O’Donnell | Isaac Sharratt

Musetta: Annia Hidalgo | Marize Fumero

Schaunard: Parker Brasser-Vos | Randy Crespo

Colline: Garrett Glassman | Barry Molina


Direction and Choreography: Michael Pink

Music: Giacomo Puccini; Adapted by Andrews Sill

Lighting Design: David Grill

Costume Design: Paul Daigle

Scenic Design: Richard Graham

Conductor: Andrews Sill, Milwaukee Ballet Orchestra

Ticket Info

La Bohème runs November 2-5, 2017 at the Marcus Center for the Performing Arts, 929 N. Water St., Milwaukee. The production is two hours and 15 minutes (including two 20-minute intermissions). Tickets range from $40-$115. For additional information or to purchase tickets, call Milwaukee Ballet box office at (414) 902-2103 or visit

Pre-Show Conversations

Nov 2 and 3 at 6:30pm

Florentine Opera Studio Artists perform Puccini classics and more.

Nov 4 at 6:30pm

Milwaukee Art Museum’s Britany Salsbury (PhD) discusses the Degas to Picasso exhibition and Paris as the epicenter of modern art in the 19th and 20th Centuries.

Nov 5 at 12:30pm

Graham Sheffield CBE, Director Arts, British Council, interviews Michael Pink about the challenges and rewards of adapting Puccini’s most famous opera into a ballet.

These activities are complimentary with ticket purchase. Each will take place in the Marcus Center for the Performing Arts’ Magin Lounge.

Community Events

MAM After Dark

October 20, 7-11pm
Milwaukee Art Museum, 700 N. Art Museum Drive, Milwaukee

Each month at MAM After Dark, a diverse crowd gathers to experience music, food, drinks, and art in the most famous building in the city.

This month, Milwaukee Ballet hosts its own hot spot at the event with a Bohemian Artist Den. Try your hand at live figure drawing at our ‘drink and draw’ studio featuring six Milwaukee Ballet II dancers. Make a bohemian-inspired tutu while you enjoy the view of the lakefront from Milwaukee Art Museum’s East End café.

Tickets are $10 in advance and $12 at the door. Free for Milwaukee Art Museum Members. Details at

Barre Talk
October 24, 6:30-8pm
88Nine Radio Milwaukee, 220 E Pittsburgh Ave, Milwaukee

Milwaukee Ballet’s Barre Talk events feature a member of Milwaukee Ballet artistic staff and a guest speaker leading animated conversation on topics important to the ballet world and beyond. For our first event of the season, Artistic Director Michael Pink shares his vision and process of adapting La Bohème into a ballet. Florentine Opera’s William Florescu will share the historical importance and enduring popularity of Puccini’s masterpiece. Details at

About Milwaukee Ballet

Founded in 1970, Milwaukee Ballet celebrates its 48th season as a staple of Milwaukee’s arts and culture scene. Under the leadership of Artistic Director Michael Pink, Milwaukee Ballet has become world-renowned for presenting bold new interpretations of story ballets and cutting-edge contemporary works. Milwaukee Ballet is the home to an international company of dancers and is one of only a few companies in the nation to maintain its own orchestra. Milwaukee Ballet School & Academy is the only professional dance school in the Midwest accredited by the National Association of Schools of Dance (NASD). Milwaukee Ballet’s award-winning Community Engagement Department serves more than 30,000 people in Southeastern Wisconsin through original, interactive programs.

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