“Phantom of the Opera” closes after 35 years on Broadway


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The Tony Award-winning musical “Phantom of the Opera” had its final curtain call on the night of April 16 after reigning as the longest running Broadway play for over 35 years.
The classic show follows the story of a disfigured, outcasted musician who haunts an opera house. When Christine, a young opera singer, mesmerizes him with her voice, he decides to lead her to the maze underneath the Paris Opéra House as her teacher. The story remains popular due to its haunting music by Andrew Lloyd Webber who also wrote music for Broadway classics such as “Cats”, “Jesus Christ Superstar”, “Evita”, and “Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat”.
The show first opened on October 9, 1986 in London. Over the past 35 years, the production has grossed more than $1.5 billion internationally along with winning seven Tony awards.
Although “Phantom of the Opera” is one of the most profitable musicals of all time, ticket sales have not matched the musical’s high production value in the past few years. After the pandemic, the show struggled to gain profit as audiences trickled back to the theater in small numbers. Senior Kyla Williams, who enjoyed the movie adaptation of the play, feels disappointed that the musical closed on Broadway.
“I watched the movie when I was younger, and I really liked it. I always thought I might go to see that play if I had the chance just because I really enjoyed the movie and the music. It’s a little sad I can’t anymore,” Williams shared.
On closing night, the entire cast came back out for an encore to sing “Music of the Night”. The producer, Cameron Mackintosh, also shared sentiments over the last performance.
“The one question I keep getting asked again and again — will the Phantom return?” Mackintosh shared. “Having been a producer for over 55 years, I’ve seen all the great musicals return, and “Phantom” is one of the greatest. So it’s only a matter of time.”