anytime I consume a new piece of media, I point my butchification beam at it. have you heard All I Ask Of You? it’s the ultimate butch/femme song. Phantom of the Opera is actually about lesbians and there’s nothing anyone can do about it.
image description below!
[ ID: Christine, Raoul, and Erik from Phantom of the Opera are pictured in a poster, surrounded by multiple red roses and falling petals. Gothic text reads “Phantom of the” in red and cream text, and “Opera” is written in white, script font. Christine is at the centre of the image with her hand on Erik’s shoulder and an arm lifting to cup Raoul’s face behind her. She is white, blushing, has brown eyes, and has voluminous brown hair. She is wearing a layered cream wedding gown that sits off her shoulders with rose embroidery. Raoul stands behind her on the left - he is mixed with light brown skin and green eyes, with long brown hair tied back into a low messy ponytail in a black bow. He is wearing a white, frilly blouse, a brown belt with a golden buckle, and dark brown pants, and has a small golden earring. His hand reaches out to clasp Erik’s arm, which is attempting to reach around Christine’s waist, and he is smiling softly at Christine. Erik is on the right, lower against Christine with his head against her collarbone. He has shoulder length black hair, blue eyes, white skin, and is wearing a white mask that covers only half of his face. He is wearing black gloves, a long black coat with a tall collar, and has white frilly sleeves of an undershirt poking out. He is crying, and holds a thorny rose in his right hand by his side. The background is a deep burgundy that is almost black around the corners of the image. End ID. ]
What I once used to dream, I now dread
If he finds me, it won't ever end
And he'll always be there, singing songs in my head...
raoulstine week 2022
↳ day 1: dreams/nightmares
[Image Description: A digital drawing of Christine Daaé and Raoul de Chagny, holding on to each other in front of a blue stage curtain background. Christine is wearing the navy blue Wishing dress with frilly white trim and Raoul is wearing a black suit. End description.]
the phantoms, in order (including those that did not appear in these clips), are Hugh Panaro (2003), Jonathan Roxmouth (2019), Killian Donnelly (2021), Ramin Karimloo (2008), Earl Carpenter (2013), Tim Martin Gleason (2009), Ramin Karimloo (again) (2011), Brad Little (2004), Dmitri Ermak (2015), Ivan Ozhogin (2014), John Owen-Jones (2010), David Arnsperger (2014), David Thaxton (2019), Hugh Panaro (again) (2012)
if i’ve accidentally miscredited any performers or performances, please let me know!
I know this will be kind of shocking for many little brains in the phandom, but I'll say it anyway: It's totally possible to love/defend Erik without trashing/insulting Christine and/or Raoul and their fans!
Yeah I know, who could imagine something like this! I can't believe it too 😲
You wanna know what's even more shocking: it's also totally possible to love/defend Christine and/or Raoul without trashing/insulting Erik and his fans!
IKR, I'm speechless as well... You can actually disagree with other people who think different from you, but still don't take it personally and be respectuful towards them regardless of their opinions and points of view! 😲😱
(Warning: high level of sarcasm in this post! Be careful if you're too sensitive)
So I went to see Phantom Of The Opera at the West End last week (I’ve been procrastinating) and I have a lot of thoughts.
- the minute the cloth was pulled off of the Chandelier and the overture began I almost cried. It sounds so corny but the Chandelier rising was just a huge ‘I’m watching Phantom of the Opera’ realisation.
- Carlotta (Kelly Glyptis) was absolutely incredible, she managed to get the balance right between not being that great and also sounding amazing if you get what I mean? Carlotta is supposed to be a bad singer because The Phantom hated her which Kelly definitely managed to show but also she sounded really good and it was impressive to hear such a powerful sound come from someone so small (not saying she’s small or anything it’s just impressive)
- Hannibal was so chaotic in a good way; there was just every so often somebody doing the wrong choreography or people getting in the way of each other or the wardrobe lady getting in the way which is exactly what would happen in a real rehearsal. I’m not normally into slapstick comedy but it really worked for Piangi (Greg Castiglioni) not being able to get onto the elephant and then him struggling to pull the sword out. Also I wasn’t expecting Christine (Lucy St. Louis) to run on late so for quite a lot of Hannibal I was thinking if they had a cover on for Christine.
- When Carlotta sang Think Of Me and she was kind of flirting with Firman and Andre (Matt Harrop and Adam Linstead) and as Andre showed how he was enjoying it, Piangi shot him a death glare which was an amazing background detail.
- When M. Reyer (James Hume) or Carlotta spoke to the mistro, they would speak to the actual orchestra pit which made it feel more real.
- When Mme. Giry (Francesca Ellis) and the managers spoke about Raoul being a patron for the opera house, Christine turned to Meg and acted really excited and I don’t know if Ellie Young deliberately made it seem like this but she seemed almost disappointed that Christine was so excited about Raoul. If that was intentional, absolutely amazing.
- Just as Think Of Me began, M. Reyer walked up to Christine, opened the song book for Christine to read and hold then the minute she looked down at it, he snapped it shut and walked off to play the accompaniment for the song. I can’t do it justice describing it but it was funny.
- When Lucy began to sing Think Of Me, you literally could hear her and there were tears in her eyes. She was absolutely petrified
- Some people when they’ve done PotO London reviews have said that Raoul sat underneath the box rather than in it but Matt Blaker sat in the box. Also throughout the whole show Matt was so in love with Christine. I know that’s always the case but he was just extra ‘you are the love of my life I love you I love you I love you’ he was a very lovey-dovey Raoul in the best way possible.
- The Megstine omg, Meg and Christine acted like they were already in a relationship as opposed to the 25th Anniversary where they acted like they had crushes on each other but didn’t act on them.
- When Christine said “he is with me even know, all around me” she looked really unsettled and was concerned about the fact that The Phantom was always there which, as someone who isn’t that keen on The Phantom I was very happy about.
- When Mme. Giry arrived at Christine’s dressing room to get Meg, she looked it them as if they had been getting… slightly too friendly. And the pure panic on Meg’s face you just know she had wanted to kiss Christine. When Meg left to rehearse she muttered “it’s always rehearsals” you cannot tell me that these two were not in a relationship or at least wanted to.
- As I already said, Matt’s Raoul was so in love with Christine he was so excited to go into her dressing room it was so adorable. Also, he knocked and waited until he was allowed to come in which is personal development. A lot of other Raouls just walk in without permission, did somebody say character arc? When Raoul was telling Christine to get ready and stuff, it wasn’t demanding it was just him being overexcited and not thinking properly.
- The title song was done really well. When The Phantom lead Christine along that walkway at the start of the song, there were loads of stairs in the background spinning and moving slowly which both showed how they’re going down but also made it seem like a dream sequence.
- Music of the Night was both awful and amazing to watch. It was sung very well by Killian Donnelly; he had some… pleasurable expressions every time Christine reacted positively to what he was doing. It was disgusting and gross but very accurate to the character.
- I am used to the 25th Anniversary version so when the mirror bride fell forward I was scared shitless. But the person playing the mirror bride stayed incredibly still which I know is incredibly difficult to do. I was on B row in the stalls so I could see very closely if it moved and it did not so well done, mirror bride.
- When Christine fainted, The Phantom just left her on the floor which I think was hilarious. Because she was unconscious, he looked at her like ‘I could do some not nice things, but I won’t’
- The Phantom’s Stranger Than You Dreamt It costume was absolutely amazing. It was so fun to see this man who everyone associates with black suits and darkness wearing this really colourful and beautiful outfit. When Christine was reaching round trying to take his mask off, he would very deliberately lean over the other side. But when Christine finally did take the mask off, oh shit things got wild. I genuinely thought Killian was going to accidentally hit Lucy he moved to quickly. She was absolutely petrified. And when she did give the mask back, it didn’t seem like it was out of pity, it seemed like it was a way to make him stop inching his way closer to her. Speaking of which, The Phantom moved in some weird ways which made him seem even more mysterious.
- I’m not a huge fan of Magical Lasso but in this, it didn’t seem like a filler, it felt like a scene that needed to be there. When Joseph Buquet (Michael Robert-Lowe) was trying to make the girls scared it only made them intrigued about who this opera ghost was. But when he put the noose around his neck in the background you could see The Phantom dragging Christine away which made the ballet girls scream. Buquet thought he had finally made them scared and looked really smug.
- Mme. Giry was played a lot differently from in other productions. It seemed like Francesca Ellis was playing the Persian from the Leroux novel rather than a strict ballet instructor. She wasn’t all shouty and like an army officer, she was more mystical and appeared out of nowhere. That Mme. Giry knew some stuff.
- Andre and Firman were amazing. The actors managed to convey a very natural work relationship where they both were so sick of each other but couldn’t handle a single day without the other.
- When Raoul came on asking where Christine was, he appeared out of a door on stage that was in total darkness but you could see behind the door where he had just come from it was all smoky and bright. He was so concerned for Christine during the whole scene I felt so sorry for him; he kept on talking to Mme. Giry and comparing all of the notes, he tried so hard to make sure she was safe.
- Carlotta and Piangi both came through that door with all of the smoke and stuff as well but halfway through Notes, it randomly opened and closed. Piangi looked around slowly with fear on his face but nobody else did which makes me wonder if that was deliberate or not. If that was a genuine technical difficulty they should definitely keep it in. It made it seem a lot more eerie and gave me chills.
- Throughout the whole of Notes and Prima Dona, Piangi was so in love with Carlotta it was amazing he kept blowing her kisses and was so defensive of her. Carlotta was brilliant, she was so self-absorbed and absolutely loving getting all of the attention.
- Il Muto was so bad but good. It felt like the trashy soap operas my mum watches which I guess is what they would have had back then. I loved all of the costumes and the set so much; it all looked fake in the way that regular props look fake. When Carlotta said “Serafimo, away with this pretence” she pulled off Christine’s skirt and Christine threw her bonnet to the side which Don Attilio (Edward Court) caught. I am always amazed when actors catch things on a stage, how can they catch stuff every single time?!
- When the Phantom said “she’s singing to bring down the chandelier” the chandelier above us actually rattles and swayed which I want expecting.
- All I Ask Of You was my favourite part of the whole show. The set on the rooftop was beautiful and was made not to look real but to look like a drawing of the roof. On the roof of the Palis Gardiner there are two (I believe) statues of horses and they managed to recreate one of them and have it on the stage which The Phantom was behind.
- I am probably biased because I am a Raoulstine shipper but they were so bloody adorable together. They were so in love and calm in each other’s presence. If you have seen Matt do All I Ask Of You then you will know what I mean when I talk about the little spin. In the song, obviously you have the spin where Raoul picks Christine up and spins her around and it’s all magical and beautiful and adorable and one of the only happy moments of the show. But, in this version during one of Raoul’s verses he gets so excited he doesn’t know what to do with himself and just spins round. I am not joking I’d pay all that money to see Phantom again just to see that little spin. I’ve used adorable to describe Raoul too much but he really is adorable.
- One thing I had a slight problem with was when Raoul got on his knees and held his hands out for Christine, Christine pulled him back up. I know it happens in most productions of Phantom but I always saw that moment as being him proposing to Christine. In the Leroux novel, they agree to have a secret engagement while they’re on the roof so Christine pulling Raoul back up kind of seems like she turned down his proposal whereas in the 25th, Sierra going onto her knees as well made it seem like she was accepting the proposal. But that’s just a small thing and I’m probably over-analysing it.
- When Raoul sang ‘Christine I looooooove you’ Christine’s reaction was absolutely amazing. It wasn’t just her being happy or anything it was her reacting as if that was the first time anyone had said that to her in years but in a positive way.
- The horse statue which the Phantom was on was absolutely huge and looked incredibly heavy so I was surprised at how quickly and smoothly it moved to centre stage. His reactions to Christine and Raoul singing off stage were so painful and looked like it was truly agonising for him to hear.
- The Chandelier crash was really cool. Even though it was safely away from my head I felt like I needed to duck my head.
I’m going to talk about act 2 in a different post because I feel like it will be too long otherwise.