Diary of a Washington National Opera star


Joshua_Bloom_1_-_Devices (525x700)


There is a homily hanging from the wall of the cafe near the Washington National Opera rehearsal space in Takoma which reads: “Coffee – The most important meal of the day”. I happen to wholeheartedly agree with this sentiment. When I’m at home in San Francisco the coffee is made at home – I am a trained barista and my setup includes a commercial La Cimbali and Mazzer grinder – so I don’t need to really leave the house except to replenish my bean supply. On the road, I sometimes carry a portable kit of Australian made brass devices, which are capable of producing wonderful espresso in the right hands, (i.e.,.mine!).

Joshua_Bloom_2_-_Coffee (700x525)

Unfortunately, on this trip I am bereft of my gadgets, so it’s off to the local cafe in Columbia Heights.

Joshua_Bloom_3_-_Columbia_Heights (525x700)I make it my mission to read The New York Times in its traditionally printed glory whenever possible – it is, in my opinion, the best English-language newspaper in the world. In San Francisco I have it delivered, but here in D.C. I pick it up daily from the local CVS. My current fascination is the Ebola virus, which is getting a lot of coverage over here. I need a second coffee to fortify me.

Joshua_Bloom_4_-_NYT (700x525)






The rest of the afternoon is pretty quiet on a show day. I do some gentle warming up and check to see that I haven’t forgotten anything important (like contact lenses) to bring to the theater. Once in make-up, the unpleasant task of having an enormous fake beard glued to my face commences.


Joshua_Bloom_5_-_Beard (525x700)
















Fortunately it only stays on for half an act, but the glue seems to want to stay with me for much longer…….

Joshua_Bloom_6_-_On_Stage_-_photo_by_Scott_Suchman (700x467)


Joshua Bloom plays Colline in Washington National Opera’s La Bohème at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts on November 1, 4, 7, 9, 12, and 15 (matinee). For more information and tickets, go to www.kennedy-center.org/wno.

Never miss a story.
Sign up for our newsletter.
Email Address


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here