• Nominee — 2018 Dora Mavor Moore Award, Outstanding New Musical/Opera: Joel Ivany
  • Nominee — 2018 Dora Mavor Moore Award, Outstanding Production
  • Nominee — 2018 Dora Mavor Moore Award, Outstanding Direction: Joel Ivany

The AtG production that started it all, and uprooted opera from the opera house. Our modern adaptation and English translation of the Puccini classic shifted the tale of struggling artists to the present-day, and unfolded entirely inside a historic dive bar in the heart of Toronto’s Annex neighbourhood.

This May 2017, we present a fully-staged remount of our acclaimed, groundbreaking English “transladaptation” of the Puccini classic and bring it home to the historic Tranzac Club. Joel Ivany directs, and Topher Mokrzewski music directs. Featuring the University of Toronto Opera Chorus.

The story is set in modern-day Toronto. We’re not at Café Momus, but at The Tranzac Club: the most comforting dive bar in the heart of the Annex. This is La Bohème. Experience it (with a beer in hand) for the first time.


Click to read: Everything You Need to Know About the Performance

Doors open 7:30pm. Rush line for non-ticket holders begins as early as 7pm outside the Tranzac. At 8pm, the performance begins.


Seating is cabaret style, on a first-come, first-served basis. No reservations, except media seats. But, please email us at tickets@againstthegraintheatre.com or call us at 647-367-8943 if you have any special seating concerns or questions. Accessible seating is available, and the venue is wheel-chair friendly.


#AtGBoheme is sung in English, with a new English libretto by Joel Ivany. The performance is 2.5 hours with one 30-minute intermission.


Photos courtesy of Nikola Novak. Graphic Design Eitan Zohar. Illustration Jessie Durham. Video Andrew Martin-Smith.



Friday, May 19  8pm
Sunday, May 21  8pm
Tuesday, May 23  8pm
Thursday, May 25  8pm
Saturday, May 27  8pm
Wednesday, May 31 8pm
Monday, May 29  8pm
Friday, June 2  8pm


Buy tickets

Please note: Tickets for #AtGBoheme are now off-sale due to record-breaking interest. A limited amount of Rush tickets will be available each night of the performance, at the door. $35 cash only. Rush Tickets may be standing-room only. Line up early for these (as early as 7pm) in the Rush Line outside the Tranzac. (Show begins at 8pm.)


Tranzac Club
292 Brunswick Ave, Toronto, ON M5S 1Y2

Gallery (2017 Production)

Press (2011 Production)

"A bold debut production for a fledgling company whose goal is to reinterpret the theatrical experience."

− The Toronto Star

This La Bohème belongs in the bar | The Toronto Star
“A bold debut production for a fledgling company whose goal is to reinterpret the theatrical experience.”

La Bohème | Toronto Life
“This adaptation retains Puccini’s characters and music, so purists will still find something to marvel at.”

La Bohème Goes Against the Grain at the Tranzac | Torontoist
“One new company is taking a different tactic with [younger] audiences. It’s thrusting them right into the middle of it.”

Bohème Against the Grain | barczablog
“Against the Grain Theatre has made the opera live. And so our bohemians have an instantaneous authenticity in the grungy old bar.”

Bohème Against the Grain (Remount) | barczablog
“Joel Ivany’s adaptation moved us into present-day Toronto, and it wasn’t just a thrill.  It was a happening.”

Bohème Against the Grain | Opera Ramblings
“I really like that alongside the increasingly excellent offerings from the COC, Toronto can offer opera in settings like the Tranzac.”

La Bohème, The Canadian Way | Charlebois Post
“One of the most entertaining ideas I’ve ever had at an opera. The English lyrics were fresh, often cheeky, and immediately engaging.”

Creative Team

Joel Ivany

Joel Ivany

Stage Director & Librettist
AtG Founder & Artistic Director

Joel Ivany is the Founder and Artistic Director of AtG, and is the Program Director of Banff Centre’s “Open Space: Opera in the 21st Century” program. His directing credits include productions of Verdi’s Macbeth (Minnesota Opera), Carmen (Vancouver Opera), Les Contes d’Hoffmann (Edmonton Opera), Gavin Bryars’ Marilyn Forever (Adelaide Festival) and Le nozze di Figaro (revival at Norwegian National Opera). He is the author of five (and counting) original librettos. He was a Dora Mavor Moore Award nominee for Outstanding Direction (AtG’s Figaro’s Wedding), Outstanding New Opera/Musical (AtG’s #UncleJohn) and the recipient of the same prize for Figaro’s Wedding. Recent mainstage directing credits include debuts at the Canadian Opera Company (Carmen) and the Toronto Symphony Orchestra (Mozart’s Requiem). His 2016/2017 engagements include a new production of Dead Man Walking (Vancouver Opera), a semi-staged presentation of The Seven Deadly Sins (Toronto Symphony Orchestra) and Canadian composer Claude Vivier’s chamber opera Kopernikus (Banff Centre for Arts and Creativity).

Christopher Mokrzewski

Topher Mokrzewski

Music Director & Pianist
AtG Founding Member & Music Director

Conductor, pianist and vocal coach, Topher Mokrzewski is a steadily rising figure in the world of Canadian opera. He is serving his fourth season as Resident Conductor of Calgary Opera, and is Music Director of both AtG and of Banff Centre’s “Open Space: Opera in the 21st Century” program. A graduate of the Canadian Opera Company Ensemble Studio, he is frequently sought as a soloist, collaborator and music director. Recent conducting engagements of note include: Britten’s Rape of Lucretia at Banff Centre and the Toronto Summer Music Festival, The Mikado, L’enfant et les sortiléges at Calgary Opera and Handel’s Messiah for AtG. In 2016/2017, Topher returns to his duties at Calgary Opera and Against the Grain Theatre, as well as Banff Centre where he will next conduct Vivier’s Kopernikus.

Adriana Bogaard

Set & Costume Designer

Adriana Bogaard is a film and theatre designer originally from British Columbia. She recently graduated from the National Theatre School’s Set and Costume Design Program, and holds a BA in Drama and Film from the University of British Columbia. She has worked as a designer of sets, costumes, lights, props, and puppets for companies in BC, Alberta, Quebec, and Ontario. As a writer and director, her play The Passage won Best Solo Show at the 2016 Montreal Fringe, and the BC Playwriting Competition’s Special Merit Award.

Noah Feaver

Lighting Designer

Originally from Vancouver, Noah Feaver is currently based in Toronto. His recent credits include Rent (Mainstage Theatre Company), Cendrillon (The Royal Conservatory), Ruby Red Burlesque (Concrete Vertigo Productions), Treasure Island, Dances 2016, Arranged Marriage (Ryerson University), MANICPIXIEDREAMGIRLS (Rock Bottom Movement), Momentum 2016 (The School of Toronto Dance Theatre), Crush (The Banff Centre). Assistant credits include: It’s A Wonderful Life (Soulpepper), Fall For Dance North (Sony Centre), Still (The Banff Centre), Program 2 (Ballet BC), and A Little Too Cozy (Against The Grain Theatre).

Vassiliki Tsezou

Vassiliki Tsezou

Assistant Set & Costume Designer

Vassiliki Tsezou studied Production and Costume Design in Athens, Greece, and has worked in theatre, film, commercials, and TV. Some of her theatre credits include Cats, Marinella Meets Vembo, The Emperor’s New Clothes, Who Trapped the Karagiozis (Mr. Punch), The Barber of Seville, Isadora—When She Danced, The Professional, The Magic Flute, and The Blacksmiths. She has enjoyed working with Adriana Bogaard on Deceitful Above All Things (The Storefront Theatre) and Brundibar directed by Joel Ivany (Canadian Children’s Opera Company), and she is proud to be working for Against the Grain Theatre for the first time.

David Costello

David Costello

Production Manager & Technical Director

David Costello is a Toronto-based production manager. A recent graduate of the National theatre School of Canada, he has worked in technical, video and production roles with such companies as Harborfront WorldStage, Tarragon Theatre, Outside the March, Luminato, and SummerWorks Festival. David is excited to join the Against the Grain team for the first time on La Bohème. The only other opera he’s worked on was a version of Medea in an old brick-making factory, so he feels right at home putting on La Bohème at The Tranzac Club.

Tamara Vuckovic

Tamara Vuckovic

Stage Manager

Tamara Vuckovic received her BFA in Performance Production from the Ryerson Theatre School. She is the resident Stage
Manager of ARC (Actors Repertory Company) and of Off Centre Music Salon. Selected Stage Management credits include: Dead Man Walking (Vancouver Opera, dir. Joel Ivany); La Cecchina (GGS); Pomona (ARC); Extremophiles (The Theatre Centre); Far Away (Theatre Passe Muraille); A Little Too Cozy (Against the Grain Theatre); Agokwe (La Chapelle); The Trial of Judith K (Theatre Passe Muraille); Little Death (The Theatre Centre); Hairspray (LOT); Melancholy Play (The Empty Room); Macbeth (Sterling Theatre Company); Moment (ARC); True (Criminal Theatre); Tragedy: A Tragedy (SummerWorks Festival); and Queer Bathroom Stories (Buddies in Bad Times).

Kaitlyn Smith

Assistant Stage Manager

Kaitlyn Smith is a graduate of the Theatre Production program at York University. She is in the midst of acquiring her Equity Stage Management Apprenticeship credits; the most recent ones include Menopause the Musical (2016) by ShaggyPup Productions, The Hobbit (2016) and Brundibar (2017) by the Canadian Children’s Opera Company. She has also found immense enjoyment working as a stage manager for many independent theatre companies over the years and is excited about any new opportunities that come her way.

Michaela Dickey

Michaela Dickey

Production Coordinator

Originally from 100 Mile House, BC, Michaela Dickey’s journey as a performer has recently led her here to Toronto. She holds degrees in Opera from McGill, the University of British Columbia and the Victoria Conservatory of Music. Michaela has had the pleasure of working with AtG as a performer first, singing the role of Zerlina in #UncleJohn at the Banff Centre, and as an ensemble member of AtG’s Dora Award—winning production of AtG’s Messiah. She is beyond excited to be joining the AtG creative team on this year’s production of La Bohème.


Kimy Mc Laren


Québec soprano Kimy Mc Laren has performed more than 30 operatic roles — including Marguerite (Faust), Leïla (Les Pêcheurs de Perles), Juliette (Roméo et Juliette), Donna Elvira (Don Giovanni), Marie (Wozzeck), The Governess (The Turn of the Screw) — in France, Latin America, Asia and Canada. Last season, she took over the role of Juliette in Roméo et Juliette in Metz and Reims, sang the Fünfte Magd from Elektra in Montreal conducted by Yannick Nézet-Séguin, and sang Bach’s Weinachtsoratorium as well as recitals (Brahms’ Liebeslieder). In 2016/2017 she sings Léonore ou l’Amour Conjugal by Pierre Gaveaux in New York and Washington, and takes over Bach’s Weinachtsoratorium with the ensemble I Musici.

Owen McCausland

Owen McCausland


Canadian tenor Owen McCausland is a recent graduate of the Canadian Opera Company Ensemble Studio. He made his mainstage debut with the company as Tito in La Clemenza di Tito, stepping in for Michael Schade for four performances. Other roles with the company include Tamino in Die Zauberflöte, Testo in Il Combattimento, and Lurcanio in Ariodante and next season’s Pedrillo in Abduction and the Fisherman in Le Rossignol. He returns to the TSO this season for a concert version of Weill’s Seven Deadly Sins. He was a finalist and winner of the Canadian Encouragement Award at the 2015 George London Singing Competition and also a semi-finalist in the 2015 Montreal International Music Competition. Owen is thrilled to return to AtG after performing in AtG’s Messiah (2015).

Andrew Love


Calgary native Andrew Love is pleased to return to Canada after performing in the Tony-nominated revival of Les Miserables on Broadway as the Bishop of Digne and Javert u/s. Other recent credits include Opéra de Québec (La Traviata), Pacific Opera Victoria (Carmen, Maria Stuarda), Calgary Opera (The Rape of Lucretia, La Traviata, Filumena), Saskatoon Opera (The Marriage of Figaro), Tapestry Opera (Shelter), and the Luminato Festival (Prima Donna). Andrew completed his training at the University of Toronto where he received the ARIAS Distinguished Graduate Award for his class. He is a proud alumnus of the inaugural year of the Calgary Opera Emerging Artists Development Program.

Adanya Dunn


Soprano Adanya Dunn is an avid performer of contemporary and traditional classical music. For the 2016/17 season, she sang in AtG’s Ayre: An Evening of Osvaldo Golijov, and was a Rebanks Fellow at the Glenn Gould School, studying with Monica Whicher. Previous education: Dawn Upshaw’s Graduate Vocal Arts Program (Bard College Conservatory, NY), M.Mus. Opera & B.Mus. Voice Performance (UofT) studying with Pr. Lorna MacDonald. Activity highlights: two-time Voice Fellow at Marilyn Horne’s Music Academy of the West, two-time long-term grant recipient from Canada Council for the Arts, and current resident performer with FAWN Chamber Creative. Upcoming: Luminato Festival — title role in Charlotte: A Tri-Coloured Play with Music.

Kenneth Kellogg


Praised for his “commanding stage presence” and “rich, resonant bass,” Kenneth Kellogg is quickly gaining recognition as a sought after young artist. Born and raised in Washington, DC, he began formal training at the Duke Ellington School of the Performing and Visual Arts as a Vocal and Visual Arts student. Among his roles, many are staples of opera repertoire: the title role in Mozart’s Don Giovanni, as well as Leporello and Il Commendatore; Mephistopheles in Gounod’s Faust; and Don Alfonso in Mozart’s Così fan tutte. He is a frequent collaborator with small companies pushing the boundaries of the art of opera.

Micah Schroeder

Micah Schroeder


Micah Schroeder holds Bachelor and Masters Degrees from the University of British Columbia and is currently pursuing a diploma in opera studies from the University of Toronto. Roles with University of Toronto include Pluton in Offenbach’s Orphée aux enfers, and Argenio in Handel’s Imeneo. As a fellow of the Aspen Opera Centre in 2015 and 2016, Micah sang Schaunard in Puccini’s La Bohème and Tonic/Don Giovanni/Participant 2 in the stage premiere of Steven Stucky’s The Classical Style. Other highlights include the title role in Rossini’s Barber of Seville with Saskatoon Opera in Schools as well as the cover for Vancouver Opera in Schools. He returns to AtG after performing in AtG’s Messiah (2015).

Gregory Finney

Gregory Finney


Baritone Gregory Finney is #STOKEDISSIMO to reprise Benoit/Alcindoro for #AtGBoheme, which he first sang in 2011. Involved with AtG from the start (Figaro’s Wedding, AtG’s Messiah and #UncleJohn), Gregory is regularly seen on stage with Toronto Operetta Theatre, Opera In Concert, Opera By Request, and LooseTEA Music Theatre, and more. Known for his “big, surprising voice” (schmopera.com) he is “remarkable to watch…” (barczablog.com). Favourite roles include Antonio, Bartolo, Leporello, Papageno, Orlofsky, and Bardolfo. He’s been seen in the Canadian premieres of Jerry Springer: The Opera, Knickerbocker Holiday, and Kate and the Devil, and the world premieres of Kamouraska and Eric Idle’s Not the Messiah.

Chorus in Partnership with

Sarah Amelard
Alyssa Durnie
Georgia Burashko
Leanne Kaufman*

Andrew Adridge*
Korin Thomas-Smith*
John-Michael Scapin
Joshua Clemenger*

*Indicates role cover