Whenever I think of a mask I think of musicals. In particular The Phantom Of The Opera, because of the obvious reason that the Phantom wears a mask.
When I was thirteen we, my sister, my parents an me, went to Great Britain on summer holiday. After spending two weeks in the countryside, we finished our holiday with a weekend in London. My parents have been to London multiple times so they knew that the best option we had was to get tickets for a musical right before it started, even with the four of us. Because we had to go and see a musical. We chose The Phantom Of The Opera. Best choice ever!
Little bit of a back story. My parents have always loved musicals. Whenever they go to London or New York or anywhere with a big musical scene they get last minute tickets to see any musical they can and when musicals are performed in the Netherlands we usually go too. When my dad ran the New York marathon back in 2006 he went to see Wicked, or something like that, on his own because none of the people he went with wanted to go with him. When the four of us went to New York in 2012 we saw Mary Poppins. My parents have seen so many different musicals and so they introduced us to them when me and my sister were very young. One of the first ones I remember is Les Miserables back in 2006, we saw Wicked, Joseph and the Amazing Technicolour Dreamcoat, Soldaat van Oranje(a Dutch production), Mathilda, Cats, Mamma Mia, Jersey Boys and more recently Jesus Christ Superstar with Ted Neeley as Jesus(that man can sing!). I’m twenty now and I think I’ve seen fifteen different musicals already.
But the one that impressed me the most, by far, is The Phantom of the Opera. Andrew Lloyb Webber has written many, many musicals, most of which are loved by my parents. We have quite of few CDs of his musicals at home, which my parents played quite a lot when I was younger. So I knew what kind of music there would be in this particular musical. And yet I couldn’t have predicted how much I would love the Phantom.
The music, the story, the décor and in particular the Phantom’s voice were magical. It started when we walked in. The theatre looks like it’s part of the stage with its almost antique chairs and big chandelier hanging from the ceiling. Then when we sat down and the music started playing I got chills down my spine. I’m not normally a fan of classical music and the Phantom is about as classical as it goes when it comes to musicals, but it is hands down my favourite. The music touches something inside of me which I can’t explain. And then there’s the story. A story of a very deep love of a scarred man towards a much younger woman who loves a childhood friend who also loves her very deeply. I was only thirteen, but the story has stayed with me until this very day.
But most of all it was the Phantom’s voice. Ramin Karimloo is the actor’s name. His voice was raw instead of the normal polished voice the Phantom has. He added an edge to the character that no one had thought of before, it even got him an award. His voice is what made me love the musical most. Especially when he sings Music of the Night, my favourite song from a musical.