NYC Theater: The Phantom of the Opera Review - Dazzling, Mesmerizing, Captivating

The Phantom of the Opera, after 35 years will play its last Broadway show on April 16, 2023, is a captivating musical, filled with riveting performances and unforgettable songs and music that resonate in the senses.

As the curtain rises the audience is transported to the Paris Opera House, 1905, at a theater auction. The scene is dark, dusty, and we have the impression, the sale is a last ditch effort to raise a few dollars from the memories of the days when the theater was vibrant.

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Slowly, the props are auctioned off. As the auctioneer announces each piece, we gain a little knowledge of the theater's early days. A bidding war erupts over a music box, with the prize going to a man in a wheelchair, it is obvious the two have a connection to the relics of yesteryear. Each of the items draws closer to the main piece, Lot 666, the famed Chandelier, which as we are told plays prominently in the famous demise of the theater.

Photo courtesy of Janet Walker.

As the Chandelier is exposed, the music dramatically returns us to the time when the theater was in full splendor, magnificent theatrical performances, the new owners, walking through the dressing rooms, and we are transported to the past. It is Act 1, we are in Paris in the late 19th century.

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Suddenly we are backstage of a production, scurrying about, the financiers dressed in finery are walking through the half-dressed showgirls, as the prop masters position the pieces which will carry our audience into the world of theater.

The Phantom of the Opera, a two act musical, with 20 different scenes, tells the story of the energetic days of the Paris Opera House, when the ghosts of musicals past inhabited the rafters and someone, known only as the Phantom, continued to reside alone, making financial demands on the owners in exchange for allowing them to house their production numbers without the possibility of disaster.

By scene three we are introduced to the Phantom, and the play moves through his story, and the angelic sound of Christine's voice, that pulls him out of his shadowy existence and for a moment allow him to believe in the possibility of love, even with his deformity which is covered by a mysterious mask.

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Act Two opens on "The Staircase of the Opera House - New Years Eve," an energetic full cast number, filled with the flamboyant masquerade costumes, as we celebrate the new year, full of hope and promise.

The theater owners hope for a prosperous new year and Raoul, newly engaged to Christine hopes she will make their relationship public and she torn between the mysterious Phantom, who threatens the success of the theater, and Raoul, who can provide a new future for her.

Photo courtesy of Janet Walker.

It goes without saying The Phantom of the Opera, is more than simply entertainment. It is a thrilling, alluring, magical event that will be remembered.

Captivating from the moment the curtain rises, The Phantom of The Opera, by Andrew Lloyd Webber, the longest running show in Broadway history ends its 35-year historical run, April 16, 2023. See it before it closes.

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Tickets for shows at New York's Majestic Theater are currently on sale for performances through April 15th, 2023.

While The Phantom of the Opera may be closing on Broadway, the mesmerizing splendor is continuing to thrill audiences around the world with daily performances in London, Greece, Prague, China, Italy, Sweden, Korea, and Spain.

Ticket for performances around the world can be purchased here.

All images courtesy of Janet Walker.

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