Just one year after its 10,000th performance and 25th anniversary on Broadway, Andrew Lloyd Webber’s The Phantom of the Opera comes to Brigham Young University as one of the first university productions of the epic musical. It will be presented in the de Jong Concert Hall of the Harris Fine Arts Center and will run Wednesday, Jan. 16, to Saturday, Feb. 2.
Tickets for the previews (Jan. 16 and 17) and 2 p.m. matinees (Jan. 19, 26 and Feb. 2) are $15. All other evening performances are $25 a ticket, with $6 off for weeknights, $5 off weekends with BYU or student ID and $2 off for senior citizens and BYU alumni. There will be no performances Sundays or Mondays. For tickets, visit the Fine Arts Ticket Office, (801) 422-4322 or byuarts.com/tickets.
Based on the novel “The Phantom of the Opera” by M. Gaston Leroux, the musical tells the story of a masked figure who lurks beneath the opera house in 19th-century Paris. When his love for an innocent young soprano forces the girl to make an impossible choice, she sets in motion a series of events that will change their lives forever.
Director Tim Threlfall has challenged his production team to find a unique voice as they present this fabled tale that he suggests spans five different genres of musical theatre.
“First, it’s a ‘chick flick musical.’ Romance is at the heart of the story and the show should never stray far from its love-inspired roots,” said Threlfall.
“Next, it is a ‘spiritual journey musical’ as Christine, Raoul and even the Phantom follow paths that ultimately lead to enlightenment,” he said. “Third, our ‘Phantom of the Opera’ is a ‘gothic ghost story musical’ and we’ll consider it a compliment if an audience member lets a scream or two escape during each performance.”
“Fourth, ‘Phantom’ is a ‘period musical’ wherein cast and audience alike are transported to a time when a belief in apparitions was common. Finally, ‘Phantom’ is a ‘grand opera musical’ as it inhabits the world of opera while gently mocking its traditions and indulging in its splendor,” said Threlfall.
The production has seen unprecedented cooperation from within the College of Fine Arts and Communications in order to present the best possible version of the show.
In addition to the Interdisciplinary Music Dance Theatre Program and Department of Theater and Media Arts combining to present the musical and the BYU Symphony Orchestra performing the score, further cooperation is found in help from various theatre and media arts classes assigned to work on hair, makeup and performing the duties of stage/running crew.
BYU student Preston Yates has been cast in the titular role of the Phantom. Yates studied vocal performance and musical theatre for two years at the University of Utah before transferring to BYU in time to play the Phantom. DeLany Westfall, a member of BYU’s Young Ambassadors, will play the part of Christine Daae. The role of Raoul will be played by Tim Cooper, who is also a member of Young Ambassadors.
The BYU cast also includes Whitney Osborn as Christine Daae (on Jan. 19, 26 and Feb. 2), Caroline Morris as Carlotta Giudicelli, Brannon Killgo as Ubaldo Piangi, Sam Bostwick as Monsieur Firmin, Brad Robins as Monsieur Andre, Misha Jenkins as Madame Giry, Reba Johnson as Meg Giry, Cameron Smith as Joseph Buquet, Tyler Hatch as auctioneer, Kimberly Bunker as Madame Firmin, Jacob Shamy as Monsieur Reyer, Andy Foree as Monsieur Lefevre, Adam Russon as Porter, Bryce Peterson and Tyler Hatch as stagehands, AJ Maynes as slave master, Brandon Roach as Don Attilio, Suellen Yamaguchi as confidante, Adam Russon and Bryce Peterson as fops, Tyler Hatch as Passarino, Michael Moss as chief fire officer, Adam Russon and Tyler Schank as fire marshalls, Ben Graul and John Wilson as policemen, and Bryce Peterson as marksman.
The technical crew for “Phantom of the Opera” includes Gayle Lockwood, music director; Christine Tanner, assistant director and dramaturg; Lisa Stoddard and Shani Robinson, choreographers; Danniey Wright, production stage manager; Matthew Fife and Carson Wright, assistant stage manager; Janet L. Swenson, costume designer; Angela Robinson, costume designer; Rory Scanlon, faculty costume design adviser; Chelsea Roberts, costume designer; Deanne DeWitt, costume designer; Desiree Moss, assistant costume designer; Adam Purcell and Janelle Turley, makeup and hair designers; DeLaney Westfall, makeup designer; Mont Toronto, assistant makeup designer; Jennie Beal, assistant to makeup and hair designers; Michael Hadley, lighting designer and production still photography; Benjamin Sanders, scenic designer and projections designer; Travis Coyne, specially effects; Matthew Carlin, fight choreographer; Nicholas Sheets, dramaturg; and Karl Wesson, makeup and hair supervising instructor.
The production film crew for the production includes Tess Kelly, producer; Gary Groth, director of photography; Derek Reinhardt, editor; Adam DeMello, key grip; Willem Kampenhout, gaffer; Jarom Cowan, grip; and Nick Dixon, visual effects.
For more information, contact Ken Crossley at (801) 422-9348 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Writer: Preston Wittwer