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Behind The Mask Documentary [5 of 9] - Phantom Of The Opera
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Uploaded on Dec 18, 2008
"The Phantom of the Opera" is a musical by Andrew Lloyd Webber, based on the 1976 musical, which in turn was based on the book written by the French novelist Gaston Leroux. The music was composed by Andrew Lloyd Webber, with lyrics by Charles Hart and additional lyrics by Richard Stilgoe directed by Hal Prince, choreographed by Gillian Lynne, lighting by Andrew Bridge and designed by Maria Bjornson. The musical focuses on a beautiful soprano, Christine Daaé, who becomes the obsession of a mysterious, disfigured musical genius known as "The Phantom of the Opera", who terrorizes the Paris Opera House.
Inspired by an earlier musical version of the same story by Ken Hill, The Phantom of the Opera opened at Her Majesty's Theatre in London on October 9, 1986, where it celebrated its 9,000th performance on 31 May 2008. The original cast included Michael Crawford as the titular character, Sarah Brightman as Christine, and Steve Barton as Raoul. It is now the second-longest-running West End musical of all time, behind Les Miserables, and the longest-running Broadway musical of all time, breaking the record held by Lloyd Webber's Cats on January 9, 2006, with its 7,486th performance. The musical won both the Olivier Award and Tony Award as the best musical in its debut years on the West End and Broadway.
Despite early negative reviews, including a pan by Frank Rich of the New York Times, both the London and New York productions are still running today. According to the musical's website, it has been seen in 124 cities in 25 countries and played to over 100 million people. With total worldwide box office takings of over £1.8bn ($3.2bn), Phantom is the highest-grossing entertainment event of all time. The New York production alone has grossed US $600 million, making it the most financially successful Broadway show in history. In a sign of its continuing popularity, Phantom ranked second in a BBC Radio 2 listener poll of the "Nation's Number One Essential Musicals"....
Lloyd Webber's The Phantom of the Opera has been translated into several languages and produced in over twenty countries on six continents. With only a single exception, these productions have all been "clones", i.e., they use the original staging, direction, sets and costume concepts....
American Idol Top 2 finalists David Cook and David Archuleta both sang two numbers from The Phantom of the Opera during the Andrew Lloyd Webber week: "The Music of the Night" and "Think of Me", respectively......
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