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NDNU Music and Vocal Arts Celebrates “La Vie Bohème” in “RENT”

Belmont, CA, February 17, 2011 — Notre Dame de Namur University’s Department of Music and Vocal Arts brings Bohemia to life in Jonathan Larsen’s “RENT,” February 25 to March 6 at the NDNU Theatre.

“RENT” is a modern interpretation of Puccini’s opera “La Bohème,” set in New York City in the late 20th century. A group of starving young artists and musicians band together in the Bohemian Alphabet City to create their art while battling hunger, addiction, relationship tensions, and HIV/AIDS.

“RENT is an especially important musical because it was written at the height of the AIDS epidemic in New York City,” says Debra Lambert, chair of the Department of Music and Vocal Arts. “This continues to be a key issue for those of us in the arts and for people around the world today.”

“This show seems to be a real anthem for our students; they’ve really thrown themselves into the production and the real-life issues it portrays,” she added.

“RENT” is directed by Greg Fritsch and choreographed by Dottie Lester-White, with music direction by Ben Malkevitch. The performance features a student cast, including Neal Pascua as Mark, Luther Simon as Roger, and Alanna Pinell and Leah Sawick as Mimi. Guest artists are from College of San Mateo, Cañada College, Foothill College, Santa Clara University, and UC Santa Cruz, or are graduates of NDNU’s summer Music Theatre Conservatory. “RENT” is produced through special arrangement with Music Theatre International.

Performances are February 25, 26 and March 4, 5 at 7:30 p.m., February 27 at 7:00 p.m. and March 6 at 2 p.m. Tickets cost $20 general admission and $10 for students and seniors. The NDNU Theatre is located at 1500 Ralston Avenue in Belmont. For more information, call the Box Office at (650) 508-3729, or email concerts@ndnu.edu.