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With just a handful of days to go before my long overdue West End culture fix, I thought  I would try and find out exactly when the creative spark fired Andrew Lloyd Webber into writing what has to be one of the greatest music phenomenons of all time.

The story itself was published in 1911,  Le Fantome de L‘Opera and the author was Gaston Leroux.  Leroux had written the story after visiting the Paris Opera House where he had observed that there was a subterranean lake under the building which could be seen through iron grilles in the floor.  Leroux had also heard the unfortunate story that one of the chandelier’s counterweights had fallen into the audience during a performance.

73 years later,  Andrew Lloyd Webber read a review of a stage production of  Phantom of the Opera at the Theatre Royal, Stratford.  After reading the review he decided to call the musical aficionado Cameron Mackintosh with the seed of an idea of turning it into a new musical.

On the 9th October 1986 the show premiered at Her Majesty’s Theatre, London with Michael Crawford and Sarah Brightman in the lead roles.  The following day The Times published a review entitled ‘God’s Gift to Musical Theatre’.

On 9th October 2011 the show celebrated it’s 25th anniversary.  In February  2015, I will be seeing the show at Her Majesty’s Theatre, London where thousands of musical lovers before me have been entranced by the story of  a young soprano who becomes the obsession of a disfigured musical genius who lives beneath the Paris Opéra House.  A story that has been bought to life by the musical genius of Andrew Lloyd Webber, the lyrics of Charles Hart and additions from songwriter Richard Stilgoe and is the second longest running musical of all time next to Les Miserables.

Ramin Karimloo as the Phantom and Sierra Boggess as Christine Daaé during the Oct.2nd 2011 “25th … Phantom of the Opera – Music of the Night. rockfleet … Published on Mar 29, 2012. Ramin ….. Phantom of the Opera (Royal Albert Hall) – “All I Ask Of You” – Duration: 8:01. by T.F. Allen 595,749 views.

 

Written by Tessa Barrie

Blogger from Jersey, Channel Islands UK who believes life's too short to be niche.

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