(Doing our best to bring you John Simon reviews of plays he actually liked, this article appeared on Bloomberg, Sept. 5.)
After 8,984 performances and with no end in sight, Andrew Lloyd Webber’s 1988 hit “The Phantom of the Opera” survives into a ripe age that makes it deservedly Broadway’s longest-running musical as well as an international favorite.
Based on a 1911 novel by the French thriller writer Gaston Leroux, Lloyd Webber’s “Phantom” has spawned many a film and television version, what with its melding of romance, the supernatural and tunefulness, an irresistible trio. By now you hardly need a synopsis of this love triangle involving a masked ghost bedeviling the Paris Opera, the dashing young Vicomte Raoul de Chagny, and Christine Daae, the nascent diva torn between them.
(Listen to selections from the original cast recording:)
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