The Phantom Experience

From age 13 when my friend Erin’s family saved pennies in a jar to go to The Phantom of the Opera, I’ve dreamed of seeing the Broadway show. The more I found out about the plot of the musical however, the less I cared about the actual story and the more I wanted to see it simply for the music and the spectacle. Okay, let me be honest. I wanted to pay $50 just to watch the dramatic chandelier drop.

So today Dan and I paid the pennies from our jar and we watched the chandelier fall… in slow motion supported by super-thick wires. The way I remember hearing about it, the chandelier came crashing down on the audience, barely missing people’s heads and falling so fast that everyone screamed in delighted terror. There was no unscripted screaming in the theatre today as we listened to the hydraulics lowering the giant prop smoothly to the stage. No terror at all.

I would have walked out right then and there if it had been intermission and taken a long disappointed potty break out of spite if it weren’t for the fact that the music was so beautiful it made me cry. Now to be honest, I should put the tears in context.

I also cried when I saw Reba in concert… and Dave Matthews… and Dido. I cried at the So You Think You Can Dance live show and last week I cried at the gym when a muted commercial for The Biggest Loser: Family Edition came on one of the monitors.

But still, the music was gorgeous despite the egregious lack of diction from the chorus (we could not understand a word they were singing) and the pathetically un-near-deathness of the chandelier crash. And I got to wear some hot shoes and hold Dan’s hand (mostly because of the love and only partly because of the spiky hotness of the shoes).

The sets and costumes were gorgeous, making me want to light a thousand candles, buy a smoke machine and sew a velvet cloak with a hood to wear whenever Dan and I are cavorting around in underground tunnels bursting into song. I mean, Christine wears a hooded velvet cloak and “strange angel” psychopaths are swarming her practically all the time. What’s not to love about that?

The one question that haunted me as I left the theatre was — what did “keeping your hand at the level of your eyes” have to do with the price of eggs? Would shielding his eyes really have kept Raoul from the noose? Honestly?

Coming soon: The Phantom Experience — According to Dan

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