The Phantom Menace

Andrew Lloyd Weber's The Phantom of the Opera is a modest little show of restraint and subdued dramatics. Nah, just kidding — when the fact sheet for the show lists ephemera such as the weight and drop speed of the famous chandelier (one ton and 2.5 meters per second), and that 250 kilograms of dry ice are required for each performance (along with ten fog and smoke machines, no less), you know you're dealing with a spectacle. So embrace it. As Weber points out in his background notes on the show, the Paris Opera House, which serves as home base for the Phantom, was famous for its realistic erupting volcanoes and other mind-blowing stage effects. And Weber's adaptation of Gaston Leroux's potboiler about a young soprano and the lachrymose monster who haunts the opera house in an attempt to win her love can indeed blow your mind through its music and, of course, those dazzling special effects. The Phantom of the Opera returns to rock your nights (all of them except Monday, at any rate) through Sunday, October 25, at the Fox Theatre (527 Grand Boulevard; 314-534-1111 or Tickets are $28 to $130— dry ice ain't free, you know.
Tuesdays-Sundays. Starts: Oct. 1. Continues through Oct. 25, 2009

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