The Phantom of the Opera: The End of an Era

Ally Kling, Editor

After 35 years on Broadway and over 1.3 billion dollars in profit, The Phantom of the Opera had its final showing on April 15th, 2023. This play is based off of the novel titled The Phantom of the Opera by Gaston Leroux, which is about a female musician and a mysterious genius that live underneath an Opera House in Paris, France. Phantom, which has been a pillar of Broadway shows since its opening in 1988, felt the weight of the pandemic fanatically and financially, and proved difficult to maintain, resulting in its closure. With the show’s composer, Andrew Lloyd Webber, and former cast members such as Hugh Panaro, Howard McGillin, and Sarah Brightman, the show made a fantastic and emotional ending to its decades-long run in the Majestic Theatre.

During this historical closing night, Webber—the creator of this famous play—took a moment during the night’s conclusion to dedicate the very last Phantom show to his late son, Nick, who passed away in March after his battle with cancer. He stated to the crowd that “when Nick was a little boy, he heard some of this music.” Adding onto this dedication, Sarah Brightman, Nick’s mother, mentioned that “when Andrew was writing it, Nick was right there, so his soul is with us. Nick, we love you very much.”

As the curtains closed for one final time, Webber had one piece of advice for the Broadway World: “With the curtain now fallen in New York on the musical that has been the biggest of my career, I passionately pray that Broadway rediscovers the appetite for new scores and original work that made me so excited when I was a kid.”