When you think of the West End, or perhaps theatre more broadly, there’s a good chance The Phantom of the Opera is the image that springs to mind. The iconic mask and rose we associate with Andrew Lloyd Webber’s masterpiece is as recognisable as many high street brands.
It’s a remarkable testament to the enduring quality of the performance and production to consider that this show has been played globally since 1986, almost four decades of new generations falling in love with theatre thanks, in part, to this tale of love, jealousy, and betrayal.
Then again, the same old faces will always come back to see this display of genius by the cast and crew. It’s a story that never gets boring for theatre lovers. The reasons for that are aplenty depending on what you look for in theatre, but it exemplifies how, when every aspect of the story is so beautifully constructed and delivered, it will appeal to almost anybody.
Introducing The Phantom of the Opera
For those unfamiliar with the plot, let us lay out the foundations of the storyline to you; beneath the stages of a Paris opera house in the 1800s, a disfigured and masked man hides from the outside world but can’t hide his feelings for Christine Daaé, the venue’s talented new singer. As Christine discovers the Phantom exists, they develop a bond and he trains her further for the stage, only for her to turn her attention to another man, Raoul, thus sparking the Phantom’s desire for revenge.
The chaos and heartbreak at every turn of this enchanting story has stood the test of time, and the smart money says it will continue to do so. A flawed man, both physically and emotionally, wants to be loved but his feelings are never reciprocated, creating palpable tension and drama among the spectators.
An Olivier Award is an extremely difficult prize to get your hands on, but it’s clear to see why this show has achieved this on numerous occasions.
A show that’s revered internationally
It’s no surprise then to hear that the production has won three Olivier Awards and seven Tony Awards throughout its lifespan, plus the Olivier Audience Award in 2016. The show amassed over $1 billion on Broadway alone! A staggering feat by any metric.
It’s not just the West End and Broadway where you’ll find The Phantom of the Opera either; the show has been performed in 41 countries across the planet in 17 different languages since making its debut at Her Majesty’s Theatre in London. The global appeal for Andrew Lloyd Webber’s adaptation of the early 20th-century French novel is applaudable.
If you’ve seen this performance already, maybe we’ve whet your appetite once more to visit the West End for another viewing. If you’re yet to witness The Phantom of the Opera, what are you waiting for? Tickets for performances can be found here.