Whether you’ve seen the show or not, we all know the sound of that iconic organ intro. It incites so many emotions all at once, from dread to excitement and everything in between. Finally, that organ and the show it belongs to, Andrew Lloyd Webber’s Phantom of the Opera, are returning to Melbourne.
It’s been 35 years since Phantom—that’s what the insiders call it—opened in London’s West End, since then, the show has played to over 140 million people across 166 cities in 35 countries. It has reeled in more box office revenue than any other film or production and is the longest-running stage show in the world. So yeah, it’s kind of a big deal.
The show is based on French author Gaston Leroux’s book by the same name, and tells the story of a mysterious masked man (the phantom) who torments those inside the Paris Opera House. But when the phantom falls madly and obsessively in love with soprano singer Christine, he does everything in his power to ensure her success at the detriment of himself and others. The story is told through Andrew Lloyd Webber’s epic music, performed by 65 cast and orchestral members, making it one of the largest ever productions to hit Australia.
The production by Cameron Mackintosh will feature new staging, set design and special effects, including a reimagining of the famous ‘chandelier scene’. So if you’ve seen the show before, you’ll still have something new to look forward to alongside your favourite songs. Australia’s own Josh Piterman will be playing the coveted role of the phantom, as he did in London before COVID-19 forced London’s theatres to close.
The Sydney run of shows has mostly sold out already, and broke the record for highest-grossing sales in a single day for the Sydney Opera House. A similar scenario is expected for the Melbourne shows which start in November—so get onto it quick.
Phantom will be playing at the Arts Centre Melbourne State Theatre from November 2021. Join the waitlist for tickets here.
In the meantime, check out the FRIENDS musical parody hitting Melbourne in June.
Image credit: Opera Australia