POST: 'The Phantom of the Opera' - should I be creeped out?
What's it about?
The Phantom of the Opera is about a deformed composer who haunts the performers of the Paris Opera House and falls in love with an aspiring Soprano named Christine. He takes her under his wing, giving her the voice of a star and grows angry when his love for her fails to be reciprocated.
What I experienced?
Should I be creeped out right now?
Considering how long I've been going to see live theatre, it came as a surprise to me and everyone I told that I had never seen Phantom before now. My decision to see it came down to me wanting to cross it off my "theatre bucket list". Going into it, I knew very little about the premise. All I knew was that it revolved around a man who wears a white mask on one half of his face and that it is the longest running show on Broadway.
I didn't think I had any expectations of the show until it started. Considering it's been on Broadway for twenty-nine years (that's a freaking long time!!), I don't know why I thought it would be my idea of spectacle as I know it today. I really had to take a step back and think about how this must have looked and felt when it originally came out in 1986. Sure, being that it's now 2017, these effects seemed a bit dated but it's also really interesting to consider how cool this must have been back then. It's also crazy, considering how quickly shows close on Broadway, that Phantom has kept its place at the Majestic Theatre for this long and that I'm still able to see a show today that is older than me.
I came to the conclusion after the show ended that I might not really like opera singing. Yes, it's really beautiful and impressive but personally, I just can't get into it. Silly me for not realizing that The Phantom of the Opera would have operatic singing (um, duh Cheyanne...).
I felt like the Phantom was super creepy! I found myself wondering if it was just me who found the "relationship" between the Phantom and Christine a little bit gross. I'm not sure if it was intended to be anything more than a paternal kind of relationship but I felt more and more uneasy every time they had a scene together. Every time he touched her or even sang to her, I just wanted her to slap him and run off stage. Looking around me at the other audience members, I grew more curious about whether they also felt like the Phantom came across dominating and violent, like I thought he did. I couldn't get myself to root for the Phantom at all, and I am known to root for the perceived villain with a hidden romantic side. But in this case, everything that happens to him throughout the show, I felt like he deserved. Christine also looks no more than seventeen years old (the actress I saw that night is actually my age) - which makes it even more weird and creepy.
Everything about the show gave me Beauty and the Beast vibes without the talking furniture and dinnerware (sidenote: I rooted for the Beast one hundred percent more than the Phantom) and while it wasn't my favorite, I can understand its appeal. Its got an old, classic and traditional vibe. I was actually really surprised when I posted about the show on my Instagram, how many of my friends love this show. I felt like I must have missed something but I realize now more than ever that just because something is a classic, doesn't mean it has to or will appeal to everyone.
Want to see it?
What did you experience?
Let PXP know in the comments below...