When The Phantom of the Opera first premiered in Melbourne way back in 1990, it ran for two-and-a-half years straight. And now, after a record-breaking session at the Sydney Opera House, it’s finally back here in Melbourne. Whether you’ve seen the musical before, or you’re curious to see it for the first time, you should absolutely follow the angel of music and see Phantom while it’s in Melbourne. Due to incredible demand, the Melbourne season has been extended. Find Cameron Mackintosh’s dazzling production at the State Theatre in Arts Centre Melbourne, from now until February 18, 2023.
The Phantom of the Opera
This legendary musical from Andrew Lloyd Webber is based on the classic novel, Le Fantôme de L’Opéra, by Gaston Leroux. It tells the story of a mysterious masked figure who dwells below the catacombs of the Paris Opera House. He falls in love with a young soprano, Christine, and uses his devious tricks to nurture her talents and make her into a star.
This new production by Cameron Mackintosh features grand new staging with special effects, from the dazzling chandelier to the underground lake. Australia is the third country to see this triumphant new rendition, after a record-breaking tour in the UK and a seven year tour in the United States. This musical production is one of the largest in Australia, with a cast of 37 and a 27 piece orchestra. It includes all of the familiar songs you know and love, including All I Ask of You, Music of the Night and the thrilling title song, The Phantom of the Opera.
The show review
The long-awaited musical is truly a sight to behold. From the sparkling chandelier to the vivid original costumes by Maria Björnson, everything works together marvellously to transport you to 19th century Paris.
Taking on the role of the Phantom is Josh Piterman, who absolutely commands the theatre from every possible corner. Whether it’s his voice ringing ominously off-stage, or he’s on the set itself, Piterman embodies the tortured nature of this psychotic, musical genius with ease.
Amy Manford as Christine Daaé is equally captivating. She embodies the ingenue’s innocence, and she takes the audience to the highest of highs with her vocal mastery.
The character of Raoul, Vicomte de Chagny, feels wonderfully sweet thanks to Blake Bowden. His presence in All I Ask From You feels particularly tender.
Also of note is Giuseppina Grech, an impressive vocal artist that brought the humour to her role of the diva Carlotta Giudicelli. The rest of the cast is also remarkable, and the striking performance of Masquerade dazzles the senses.
The new set design by Paul Brown is wonderfully clever, contrasting the splendour of the Opera House stage to the gritty passageways behind the scenes. The moving set pieces allow for seamless transitions, and it particularly shines when the Phantom and Christine descend down into the labyrinths for the first time.
This production of The Phantom of the Opera is directed by Laurence Connor, with choreography by Scott Ambler, and sound design by Mick Potter. It features the original Tony Award-winning costume design by Maria Björnson, as well as lighting design by Tony Award-winner Paule Constable. You won’t be able to forget this opulent show anytime soon.