Phantom

dan-and-john-at-theater

We never know when our next offer of entertainment is going to come. Yesterday afternoon, I was preparing for a wild Saturday evening painting garage door panels when we received a call from Deb. She was offering me a ticket to see The Phantom of the Opera (Deb had already given Dan a ticket and another had become available). This was not just any performance of Phantom; this was the 25th Anniversary Broadway performance for an invited audience only.

Hmmm, Paint or Phantom?

phantom-or-paint

It was an easy decision to make.

john-with-phantom

And it was nice to hear Dan say that his evening would be much more fun with me joining him.

john-with-sign

Our first stop was a Japanese restaurant near the theatre

john-at-japanese-restaurant

where we grabbed a quick pre-show dinner with Deb, and raised our sake cups in celebration.

dan-and-deb

We arrived at the Majestic Theater close to curtain time. The place was buzzing with excitement, and everyone was dressed up for the event. As soon as the performance got underway, the roar of the crowd made it clear that there were many serious Phantom fans in the audience.

Dan recalled that he previously saw The Phantom of the Opera twenty five years ago in London — which must have been around the same time the show opened in New York.

dan-and-john-with-sign

I had not seen the show before and was impressed with all aspects of it. I could understand why this show has become the longest running Broadway musical while others have come and gone. The great staging and costumes make it visually engaging throughout, the individual performances are strong, the orchestra sounds great, and the show never loses momentum.

the-stage

Dan commented that one remarkable thing about the show is that a true feeling of compassion is conveyed between the lead characters; something that is not easily done on stage, especially in a musical, and particularly when one of the characters is rather ghoulish.

During intermission we always enjoy going to the orchestra pit to look for musicians that we know. We were pleased to find Carol and Joyce along with Deb. It’s no surprise they make beautiful music.

carol-joyce-and-deb

After the show we met Deb again so that we could bring her viola home; she was heading to the show’s black tie anniversary celebration. Alas, we were not included, but I enjoyed carrying Deb’s viola and giving the impression I had just played a Broadway show…

john-with-deb's-viola

complete with special effects.

john-on-broadway

live. enjoy. repeat.

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