Here's Phil to take the reins:
Another theatre-luvvy day today, this time it’s The Phantom of the Opera. We decided to see the show again, partly because it’s visually quite stunning and also in readiness for seeing the sequel (Love Never Dies) in a couple of month’s time. It was also a good opportunity for Lee, now having seen the show once and knowing the story, to get the chance to appreciate the visual side to the show and the effects instead of having to intently follow the captions. (Which I add were done superbly by Stagetext).
Phantom is one of those shows I would probably never get bored of. It is very easy to get swept away by the power and emotion of the music along with the stunning sets, costumes and effects. I always look forward to the opening of the show and the great swell of the music as the chandelier comes alive. It’s a real “goose bump” moment for me.
It relies heavily on, what look like, quite simple special effects but, in actual fact, they cost a fortune to produce and the majority were specially designed for the show – the travelator, the trap door (which plummets the Phantom at about 60 miles an hour), a collapsible staircase, folding candles, remote controlled boats, the “magic” chair etc. It is also quite interesting to know that there is very little storage space backstage so the majority of the set pieces, including the full size Elephant, are hung above the stage when not in use.
Every time I see the show I am amazed by its complexity and how “tight” it still is even after 20 odd years in the
West End. I think it will continue for many decades to come and probably long after the sequel has closed too.
Needless to say we will be back again and, hopefully, will be seeing the