Unlike Cinderella, this was not my first time at the theatre, however it was my first time seeing Phantom of the Opera and I cannot believe I hadn’t seen it sooner! Of course the “dunnnn dun dun dun dun dun” of Andrew Lloyd Webber’s Phantom of the Opera was familiar, I didn’t know much more. In preparation for the show, I listened to the music, read the plot summary and got more and more excited the more research I did. On Friday night, my favorite fellow theatre goer- my mother- and I headed over to the Straz Center.

After a glass of champagne (note to readers: split the bottle of champagne with your theatre buddy, definitely a better deal than the wine we did last time) For this performance we were seated in the balcony and it was cool to get a different view of the stage this time. And from here, you were really able to see just how many people were at the show.

Photo Credit: The Straz Center
Photo Credit: The Straz Center

The show was a whirlwind of singing and dancing with a mix of fire and smoke. There was never a moment I wasn’t fully engaged in the show. The one thing that really blew me away were the sets. The way they all transitioned so flawlessly into the other one was amazing to me. At one point, the Phantom and Christine started descending upon a stairwell which came to be right in front of the audiences’ eyes. Not to mention a boat ride along the stage floor that looked like the floor has suddenly turned to water.

Photo Credit: The Straz Center

The intensity of the acting and music had me rooting for Raoul, sympathetic for the Phantom and just as confused at Christine. Going into the show I really didn’t expect it to be funny at all; I was fully prepared for romance and a little horror but definitely not comedy. Monsieur Firmin and Monsieur Andre certainly did not disappoint in that arena. Thankfully, through the  Tampa Bay Bloggers, I was lucky enough to be given tickets via the Straz in return for writing this review but there is no doubt I would have paid the money for this amazing show.  If you’re looking for a spectacular show to take in with the family this Christmas break the show is playing through January 4th and you can visit here for tickets!


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