One of the longest running musicals on Broadway, Rent succeeded because it was a true rock opera, based on one of the most beloved classical operas of all time, Puccini's La Bohème. Fast-forwarded in time to the struggling, AIDS-haunted arts community camped out on New York's Lower East Side during the early ´90s, the musical (and then, the movie) borrowed all the right melodramatic elements from Puccini: Love, death, grief, pathos and pain, not to mention a tragic backstory in which the musical's real-life creator, Jonathan Larson, died right before the show took off on Broadway. What's not to love?
Well, here's the deal: Rent opens tonight at 8 p.m. at the Buell Theatre, Denver Performing Arts Complex, for a short run that continues through Sunday, June 14, and it even features original cast members Adam Pascal and Adam Rapp in the lead roles of HIV-positive songwriter Roger Davis and filmmaker Mark Cohen. Are they too long in the tooth to reprise the youthful roles they first performed more than ten years ago? Nope, say the fans. The show must go on.
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Tickets for Rent start at $20 and top out at $95. To make reservations, visit the Denver Center website or call 303-893-4100.
For more ways to rock the night and kill the day, go to westword.com/calendar.