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An Overview of the Phantom of the Opera Musical play written by: katejay The Phantom of the Opera is no doubt one of the top rated stage musicals. It is a musical play that ran on Broadway for the longest time ever, not forgetting the uncountable awards it has scooped. The play is indeed a master piece. And before you set out to watch it again, let’s take closer look at some important details that you ought to know as a big fan of this masterpiece…
The Writer of the PlayThe author behind this masterpiece is none other than Gaston Louis Leroux, a French journalist as well as popular author of detective fiction. The author rose to popularity after writing this award winning play in 1911, which went by the French title: Le fantome de l’Opera.
Composer of the PlayAfter the writer, we look at the composer of the big play. Eager to know the brain behind the sweet melodies in the play? Good, this position goes to Andrew Lloyd Webber, an English professional composer and the impresario of the musical theatre! Andrew Lloyd isn’t just a composer; he is a great composer whose hits, particularly those features in this play, run for over a decade in Broadway and West End!
The Storyline of the Phantom of the Opera Musical PlayThe story begins by introducing Christine Daee and her dad, a renown violin player. The pair usually travels through the Swedish countryside where they play violin at various events such as weddings. Christine`s father tells her stories of an “Angel of Music” who visits people with exceptional talent. As time goes by, Christine’s mother dies and she (Christine) and her dad relocates to Paris, France.
At France, Christine meets a young boy, Raoul- the Viscount de Chagny, whom she falls in love with. Together, they enjoyed listening to her father’s tales, with Christine’s favorite one being that of a little girl who was visited by the “angel of Music.” Christine’s dad eventually falls sick and before he dies, he promises to send the “Angel of Music” to visit her.
Christine luckily finds work in the ballet chorus, at the Paris Opera House. While working there, she begins to hear a phantom’s voice who teaches her how to sing better. This voice belongs to Erik, an architecture who bears a deformed face. What’s the cause of his deformed face? Are you asking yourself this question too? Well, Erick once used to work for Shah of Persia. At one time, the Shahs decide to construct a palace that would include torture rooms, secret hallways and trap doors. Erik as the architecture designed the palace after which, the shahs wanted him dead so that he couldn’t let out the palace’s secrets. Luckily, he was saved by a man called “the Persian” and he seek refuge in Paris. There, he aided in building the House of Opera. He also secretly build his own underground palace. He now haunts this building and asks the owners for a salary of 20,000 francs each month.
With time Christine grows into a beautiful big girl. At one time while performing at a gala, she becomes the talk of everyone and Erik starts to fall for her. Raoul too is in attendance and discovers he still loves her. This is the climax of the play. Who will eventfully win the heart of the beautiful Christine with her torn between the two lovers?After a tug of war between Raoul and Erik, Erik finally lets go of Christine and Raoul and marries her. This brings the pay to an end.
The CastFollowing is the original cast of the Phantom of the Opera- the 1986 London production:Michael Crawford- The PhantomSarah Brightman- Christine DaaeSteve Barton- Raoul, Vicomte de ChagnyJohn SAvident- Monsier FirminDavid Fairth-Monsieur AndreRosemary Ashe- Carlotta GiudicelliMarry Millar- Madame giryJohn Aron- Ubaldo PiangiPaul Arden Griffith- Monsieur ReyerBarry Clark- AuctioneerDavid DeVan- PorterJanet Devenish- meg giryDavid Jackson- Monsieur LefevreJamos kurucz- Joseph BuquetJames Paterson- Don Attilio/ PassarinoPetr Bishop- Slave mastr (in “Hannibal”)Justin Church- Slave Master (in “Hanibal”) Flunky/StagehandMostyn Evans- PolicemanPatricia Richards- Madame firminPeggy Ann Jones-Wardrobe mistressAndrew Golder- Potter/firemanJill Washington- Innkeeper`s wifeJill Washigton, Sally Ashfielfd, Lynne Jezzard, Nicola Keen, Naomi Tate and Patricia Merrin- “The Ballet Chorus of the Opera Populaire”Dinah Jones- Ballet swing.
Success of the Play on Broadways and London’s West EndAs we have said earlier, Andrew Lloyd`s music versions of this play enjoys its place on list of the best entertainment pieces ever. Its success has however been mostly experienced on Broadways, where the show overtook the Cats (the most popular play at the time) to become the Broadway’s longest running play of all time. What’s more, Broadways has since staged 10,000 performances of The Phantom of the Opera!
Also, the musical play boasts of success at London`s West End. Since opening for the first time at Her Majesty`s Theatre on 12th September 1986, the play has enjoyed the same huge number of performances there as those on Broadways (that is, 10,000 performances).