My husband and I are going to Vegas for the first time soon so I was browsing listings of shows and ran into the ad for the Phantom of the Opera – the LAS VEGAS Spectacular!
Ok, let’s analyze this.
Only in Las Vegas will you have privy to the all-encompassing emotional journey that is Andrew Lloyd Webber’s newest version of Phantom of the Opera. With a new name, and not to mention a new $40 million custom-built theatre, this show is sure to please even the most skeptical theatergoers.
Because skeptical theatergoers are all about a Las Vegas-ized version of an incredibly popular musical? Hm. But it goes on…
As many Phantom lovers know, the play is set in 1911 in the famous Paris Opera House. After you take your seat, take a second to look around. You will notice that you have been transported into the story and you are in the center of the Opera House itself. Like no other musical, you are no longer a disconnected audience member…you are now an essential part of the story that is about to surround you.
Disconnected audience member? Because live entertainment is soooo disconnecting. Go on, tell me more!
Phantom is the story of a young opera singer, Christine Daaé, who is mentored by a mysterious vocal coach who appears only in the shadows and lives in a secret lair below the opera house. Daaé, still grieving the death of her father, believes that her “angel of music” is actually the ghost of her late father. After several threats made by the Phantom, Christine is forced to choose between the love of her life, a young well-to-do socialite, and a life of solitude with the Phantom. The Phantom promises great misfortune to the theater and to the lives of actors and audience members. This is what makes this version of the story so entrancing. The Phantom isn’t threatening a mythical theater. He’s threatening the one you’re sitting in.
OK, the emphasis there is mine. Because I literally laughed. NOT THE THEATRE I AM SITTING IN! Really writer? Doesn’t everyone by now know about the giant chandelier that will drop? Anyway, my favorite part, you ready for this?
What makes this show even more entertaining is that without cutting one note, the show was shortened from an almost three hour production to a 95-minute thrill ride that is much more audience friendly for those not used to sitting through Broadway-length productions. Sets change seamlessly before your eyes. There are no blackouts, no costume changes, and almost no down time. It feels as if you are watching a movie, except it’s being performed live, right before you’re eyes. But the play isn’t just a whimsical journey told in the universal language of music; it’s also, in a sense, a magic show with special effects that are sure to leave you wondering…”How did they do that?”
Ooohhh, so what makes it so magical and awesome is the lack of PLOT! Story? Character development? Who needs it? As long as it’s shiny, right?
And at the very end:
There are actually two performers for each of the main roles. This allows for no costume changes. This also allows the Phantom to seemingly appear and disappear from different parts of the theater. However, if you didn’t already know, you never would’ve noticed. Not even from the front row!
So, uhm, you’ve already talked about the magical “how did they do that” part of it, and then you basically revealed it? Also, if there are 2 actors and non-stop singing, doesn’t this basically mean that none of the singing is live? Laaaame. So yeah, guess what we’re NOT seeing?