Phantom of The Opera at Her Majesties Theatre
It had been over 20 years since I last saw Phantom of The Opera (I know I don’t look that old!!) so I was thrilled to be invited along to see the current cast.
Phantom of the Opera is the iconic musical that tells of the Opera Ghost who has been living under the Paris Opera House and has been tutoring his protégée Christine. Due to the Opera Ghost’s manipulation Christine soon gets her turn as the leading lady but it results in a love triangle between Christine, the Phantom of The Opera and Raoul, Christine’s childhood friend turned lover.
The story is one that is filled with emotion, from the first flurries of a new romance, to obsession and from humour through to friendship. There are so many emotional hooks that keep the audience gripped throughout and ensure that at one moment the audience are laughing and the next fighting back the tears. Enhancing this story is the epic music and it is one of those shows where there is instant recognition with nearly every song in it. Hearing the opening refrains of ‘Phantom of The Opera’ or the sweeping love melodies of ‘All I Ask Of You’ sends literally shivers down the spine and the vocals from the current cast make this even more special.
Lucy St Louis plays Christine and she is simply breathtaking in the role. Her crystal clear soprano vocals are other worldly and she comes across as a wonderfully warm Christine which means the audience warm to her very quickly. Killian Donnelly takes the title role as the Phantom himself and again his vocals soar. He also manages to capture the softer side of the The Phantom that almost has the audience rooting for him (despite the whole stalking and kidnapping thing!). Matt Blaker as Raoul has a wonderful stage presence and a voice that makes you understand how Christine falls in love so quickly with him. Between the 3 of them this is a remarkably strong set of principals and a combination I recommend seeing before St Louis flies off to Oz.
The rest of the cast were equally as wonderful. Ellie Young was a joyful Meg, Francesca Ellis an intimidating Madame Giry and the ensemble shone in all areas, from their rich harmonies to their intricate footwork.
Phantom of the Opera is not only a feast for the ears but is a feast for the eyes. The show is nothing short of a visual spectacle. The set is one where each moment there is something new to marvel at, from the huge chandelier that comes crashing down to the Phantoms Underground lair complete with candlelight and a boat. The costumes are also a sight to behold and the explosion of colour during Masquerade is a sight that has to be one of the most stunning on the West End stage.
Phantom of the Opera is an iconic show that keeps on going for a reason and that is because it delivers on all levels – musically, a stunning cast and a feast for the eyes. If you have never seen Phantom of the Opera then you need to get to Her Majesties theatre and if you have been before then go running back as this is a musical that cries out for repeat viewing.
Phantom of the Opera has just been nominated for best musical by WhatsOnStage. You can see which other shows have been nominated and cast your votes here. You can also find out more more and book for The Phantom of The Opera on their website here.