Tuesday, October 19, 2010

1925 screening Tarrytown Music Hall, Tarrytown NY - Review

I need to be sleeping now, but blogging while any type of Phantom event is still fresh in my mind takes some precedence. Earlier this evening at 8 PM, my sweet love and I attended a screening of the 1925 silent version of Phantom of the Opera at Tarrytown Music Hall in Tarrytown, NY. My friend Dan was kind enough to inform me of this upcoming event. The movie was accompanied with live organ music.

The organist was a gentlemen by the name of Jeff Barker, he did an amazing job playing away while the movie was being shown. The best part was when he played the classic phantom music, not the ALW overture, but the classic Halloween horror theme that is known for the Phantom. Mr. Barker's organ playing made you feel the movie, and get into it even more then you would without the organ music.

Seeing the 1925 Phantom of the Opera on the big screen was...well it was amazing among other things. We were shown a print from the private collection of a man I assumed to be one of the employees at Tarrytown or part of a group that chose to put together this screening. The print he had was actually a later edition of the movie released in 1930, with the technicolor bal masque sequence. There was also some sound from when they chose to add sound to the movie, but we didn't hear any sound during the screening. What stood out to me most while viewing this movie was how clear the film appeared, my DVDs of the 1925 movie have never seemed this crisp and clear.

The 1925 movie in itself is the closest to the original novel by Gaston Leroux. The chandelier falls in the very beginning of the film, you see the torture chamber brought to life, you see Christine's choice between the scorpion and the grasshopper, you notice all of the things the phantom has bought for her and kept inside of his lair. A few minor changes in the film, the role of the persian in the book has been changed to police inspector Ledoux, and Erik dies at the end after an angry mob chases him, beats him and throws him into a river. *sniffles*

Lon Chaney does a wonderful job on the make up for the Phantom as well as his portrayal in the role. His make up is the closest to Gaston Leroux's Phantom, his role makes you feel for the phantom, and yet see him as an intimidating man. Mary Philbin was a great Christine, her best part to me was at the end of the film when she was trying to lie to Erik and deny hearing voices while Raoul and Ledoux were in the torture chamber. Norman Kerry as Raoul, well he did an excellent job portraying the character I despise.

Here is more information from IMDB about the original 1925 movie should you wish to know :)

Sunday, October 17, 2010

The Phantom of the Opera (Kate McMullan adaptation) - Review

This version of The Phantom of the Opera is adapted by Kate McMullan. It's part of a series called Bullseye Chillers, basically simplified versions of classic horror novels for children to read. My guess on the age level of reading for this book would be anywhere from 9 to 14, this also depends on the personal reading level of the child, advanced readers may read this book at an earlier age.

This is a pretty good simplified version of Phantom. Basically it stays pretty true to Leroux's novel. The novel is told from Erik's point of view, and for a 95 page novel with extremely large print and illustrations there is a lot of information packed into it about the phantom. There is detail about his life prior to the Paris Opera House, and there is also an emphasis on his feelings, which to me as a phan is very important.

This is a great book for younger readers to be introduced to phantom with, when I eventually have kids I can assure you they will be reading this, although knowing me they will be clutching a Leroux novel while sleeping in their cribs. This book is worth owning for phantom book collectors and phans hoping to introduce a younger child to Phantom. It's also very reasonably priced through amazon.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Phantom and PHood

Today is a lovely day!!! This morning while making a quick batch of pancakes before work, I was struck with the inspiration to create a phantom of the opera pancake - which I did. It is also my close PHan PHriend Janette's birthday - Happy Birthday Janette!!! She has had a phantom of the opera cake created in honor of her birthday by her friend Gerri. So inspiration has struck and I am creating an entry devoted to Phantom of the Opera and PHood. Mostly phantom of the opera cakes though.

To see a bunch of lovely images you can do a google search for phantom of the opera cakes - there are so many to see, apparently this is a popular idea.

There is also something I found through google called Phantom Gourmet - seems worth checking out just for the logo if you are a phan.

If you're looking to get a phan cake done, Janette's friend Geri does an excellent job!!!

Now to finish off the entry with a few images of phan cakes, including my phantom pancake :) 

One of the random POTO cakes found on a google search

I think this cake was from a celebration for ALWs Phantom but I have to double check my information

This is Janette's POTO Birthday Cake :)

This another Phan's Birthday Cake :)

This is my phantom pancake :)

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Dressing up as The Phantom of the Opera

It's that time of the year again...Halloween is fast approaching...for many of us PHans this means an excuse to dress up as the phantom....not that we don't do it anyway sometimes. So this entry is going to be filled with tips and resources on how to dress up as the phantom.

Here's my way: Of course I've dressed up in the past as the phantom - quite a few times. My way was pretty simple and cost effective. I bought a cape from the Halloween store for under $20, as well as a mask that I found in the Halloween store (most Halloween stores feature phantom masks at reasonable prices). I had a top hat from the Halloween store as well instead of a Fedora. Usually I used a pair of black pants I already owned, any white shirt I may have had and a black sweater or black suit jacket that I borrowed from my father. For shoes I've always gone with a pair of black boots I may have owned or black shoes I had that looked similar to a pair of men's shoes. One year for a costume party I went as far as tragically scarring my face hoping it would win the costume party - it did not :( For the tragic scarring I just used make up - lipsticks, eyeliner, blush and eyeshadow - I took brown, reds and pinks and just placed slashed marks all over to create an effect of disfigurement. Since I'm female and have had long hair mostly my whole life (except for a brief period in college - where I insisted on having it extremely short) I just place my hair in a ponytail and sometimes use gel or mousse to slick it back. There ya go folks that's the Diana Brewster Phantom of the Opera.

Now for other options, helpful hints resources etc.
*Obviously google is a good choice searching for how to dress up as the phantom of the opera, or for phantom of the opera costumes will provide you with many hits and choices.

Wiki Hows helpful hints

e-how.com's idea for the phantom

You may want to check on phantom of the opera message boards you might know about, other phans may have suggestions as well for you, my favorite message board is phantomoftheopera.com 

Where to buy Phantom of the Opera Gear for costumes: 

You can buy phantom of the Opera gear from any Halloween store that's local to you, you can also use e-bay - use the search term : Phantom of the Opera Costumes or even Amazon there are links to some phantom costume items from amazon below. For clothing you can talk to someone you know that does sewing to create clothing (especially if you would like to opt for a Christine costume instead of the Phantom) you can go with what you own, check costume shops, or hunt clothing and department stores to see what you could come up with.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Phantom of Manhattan Review

This is my third and what I hope to be my final time reading this monstrosity of a novel. I read it once when it first came out and swore I would never read it or another work by Frederick Forsyth ever again. Well I haven't read anything else by Forsyth. My second time reading this novel came with my masters thesis based on Phantom of the Opera, of course, and now this time to take notes and re read for this blog - needless to say you obviously know this book is landing a bad review. This book is 177 pages of poorly written horse poo, 177 pages is nothing for me to read but it is when the book is torturing me.

First let's start with the preface. Forsyth gives ALW a world of praise, and proceeds to try to discredit Leroux. How do you discredit the author of an original work? A work that is clearly fiction, a work that Leroux knows is fiction, how do you argue that the work should then be factual and that Leroux was wrong in order to set up for your piece of crap sequel. The awful sequel that inspired LND.

Now let's get on to the ridiculous book itself. Forsyth has no creativity whatsoever, even though he might think he's clever. He tells a jumpy story from the point of view of characters like Taffy Jones and Cholly Bloom *snicker* The story brings Erik to Coney Island, leading a multi million dollar corporation. Erik rejected from attending opera at the MET, pairs up with Oscar Hammerstein (not the same one who has worked with Rodgers on Broadway shows, but an earlier relative) to create another Opera House. Erik intends to bring Dame Nellie Melba to debut for his opera but upon learning from Madame Giry (before she died) that he has a son with Christine, he sends for Christine to come to New York and debut in the first opera. This sets off a series of events and by the end Christine ends up dead like she does in LND, except her death scene is merely a few sentences versus a whole song in which she takes forever to die.

Honestly if you don't have too for a blog, school report, out of curiosity or for any other reason I wouldn't bother with this book. Don't waste your money, don't waste your time. I have a copy but it was given to me, after reading it the first time through a library copy I checked out, I knew I wouldn't spend a dime on this piece of trash. Unfortunately a well meaning non phan gave it to me, thinking I like all things phantom. Check out the book from a library if you must read it, you can borrow my copy and never give it back if you wish, I have posted information if you wish to buy it through amazon despite my searing review but I wouldn't spend a penny.

Monday, October 4, 2010


After an edited release of March's Sexy Phantom Ramin Karimloo, I was egged on by my PHellow PHemale PHans to create a sexy phantom calendar. So I went to zazzle and created some magic, now available to any phan is a sexy phantom calendar for 2011!!! Exciting stuff, there will be drooling and a new phantom to look at every month!!!

Click here for purchase information

Friday, October 1, 2010

October's Sexy Phantom

It's October 1st!!! New month, new sexy Phantom. This month the very incredible Hugh Panaro shall be October's Sexy Phantom. Hugh was phantom on Broadway for quite some time, since then he's left the role and then come back, well at the moment he's back on Broadway and Phans everywhere are itching to see him, so for my phans, enjoy Mr. Panaro's sexiness for the month.