Last night - July 21, 2010 - I saw ALWs Phantom of the Opera for the 42nd time - my boyfriend came with me (it was his first time) - it's always good to go with someone for the first time - or someone I haven't seen the show with - they can provide new insight - new opinions - even though I will always stick by my opinions - it's good to talk about the show with fresh blood - and get their take on things - but we will go into that a little later - Oh this is going to be a long blog today.
As always - the show is Phenomenal to me - no matter if one of the principals does the best job or not - to me it's more see the show get the fix for a few months. John Cudia was once again amazing as the phantom - I saw him last month in June. He makes the ending of the show extremely dramatic - he plays the phantom as more of a tyrant - but every actor has their own take. Jennifer Hope Willis was good as Christine. The only problem I have with her is that her voice is very weak and squeaky at times - more so during Think of Me and Wishing, but I don't know if that is because I sat in the back of the theatre - or if her voice is just that way. I'm also not the best singer - so my opinion of someone's voice could be off. Ryan Silverman was alright as Raoul. He didn't make me as sick as other Raouls have made me in the past - that's how I judge - if the Raoul makes me want to throw up a little - he's excellent. Everyone performed well - the show went off without a hitch - everything fell into place as it was supposed to. There's only been two shows where things did not go as they should - one of the performances for one of my birthdays Raoul didn't jump off the catwalk and disappear below the stage - giving the illusion that he has jumped in the lake. The phan gathering performance I attended (that was # 17) - Carlotta missed putting the apple in the pig's mouth - so the actors were kicking around the apple like a soccer ball - it was pretty funny.
When the night was over I wanted Shawn's opinion. He said he really didn't like the phantom or Raoul very much. He did say he would route for the phantom - but he had thought the phantom was a little bit out of control when he killed people and kidnapped Christine. This is of course the normal non phan opinion about the phantom. So no one spear him please! I've had friends of mine tell me the same thing - because they don't view the show and the phantom as myself or another phan might - simply because they haven't put in the time and research that myself and other phans devote to our hobby. If I were an outsider to the show I might say the same thing. I feel though that the phantom did what he did because no one accepted him. Looking into Erik's (the phantom's real name) prior life before the opera - you can realize he was never accepted by anyone because of his disfigurement. Yes he could have overcame it - but by being shunned his entire life - he didn't really know the proper ways to be social and express his love for Christine. I absolutely despise Raoul - I always will - simply because of his character. I don't like that he is a dronish FOP - that he is very rich and conceited - and I don't like that he had Christine by the end of the story. However if the story ended happily I know it would not be the success that it is today - what makes Phantom so great is partially the depressing ending - if the phantom did take Christine's heart most people wouldn't love the story so much IMHO. One thing I did realize yesterday night - after already thinking I have experienced the story from each character's point of view at some point in my life was that even though I despise Raoul - him and Christine were in love with each other and they couldn't change it - and they didn't want anyone else besides each other. Being with Shawn makes me see this - I don't know if I've ever really fully gone through that before. I don't want anyone but Shawn - so I can see how it is hard for Christine and Raoul to stay away from each other - and I can get why it would be hard for Christine to stay with the Phantom - she wouldn't be fully happy because her love lies with the dronish FOP. On that note - as much as I accept their love - I will forever and always HATE Raoul - I've just got to find other reasoning besides the fact that he's a dronish FOP.
So after this review of Phantom #42 - turned phantom op ed piece - here comes the extra tidbits - one partially silly - one very useful.
TIDBIT # 1 - the main page for the official sight has changed - I kind of like it - although it isn't as haunting as the prior main page.
New official main page
TIDBIT # 2 - very silly one - my PHan PHriend who lives by me is coming over later - we are geeking out to more phantom - we will watch the phantom movie - or play return of the phantom - and just hang out and have possible non phantom talk as well (surprisingly we do have non phantom talk) so even though I've seen the show last night - Janette and I have both agreed that to us there cannot be too much or enough phantom. Asking her or I or any other phan if we've had too much phantom - is like asking a normal person if they breathe too much (that I have to credit Janette with) so that's the sillyness.
With that last note -for now I say goodbye - tomorrow I may have a possible movie review depending on if Janette and I watch something tonight.