Charles Castronovo Saves ‘La Bohème’ Performance In London

By Francisco Salazar

Charles Castronovo saved a performance of “La Bohème” at the Royal Opera House after he replaced tenor Atalla Ayan’s on Friday, July 20, 2018.

The tenor, who was in the audience watching his wife Ekaterina Siurina portray Mimì, stepped in mid-show to sing the role of Rodolfo. When Ayan’s voice failed, Castronovo sang the role at the side of the stage, while Ayan acted it.

A spokesman for the Royal Opera House said: “During Friday evening’s performance of Puccini’s ‘La Bohème,’ tenor Atalla Ayan, singing the role of Rodolfo, developed vocal difficulties in Act two. In the interval Atalla decided he was no longer able to carry on singing and the very rare challenge of finding a replacement mid-performance suddenly arose. We were pleased and fortunate that Charles Castronovo was attending the performance as an audience member, supporting his wife Ekaterina Siurina, who was singing the role of Mimì. We were incredibly grateful that Charles quickly agreed to step in and sing the second half of the performance from the side of the stage, while Atalla walked the role in costume. The audience received the news of this change graciously and greeted both Charles and Atalla with a wonderfully warm reception during the curtain call at the end of the performance.”

Castronovo recently performed at the Festival Castell de Perelada in Spain and is set to perform at the Bayerische Staatsoper’s revival of Verdi’s “La Traviata.” Next season he sings in Cherubini’s “Medee” at teh Berlin State Opera and sings “La Traviata” at the Royal Opera and the Opéra National de Paris.