Saturday, September 1, 2012

Silence of the night.....

Night time sharpens...heightens each sensation.

"Music of the Night," to me refers to both "Phantom, the Las Vegas Spectacular", and our magical, mysterious city.

Our hearts break a little in the Las Vegas performing arts community and the city at large as we say goodbye to our beloved "Phantom of the Opera, the Las Vegas Spectacular". I looked at The Venetian online today and saw the show has already been replaced on their website with "Soul2Soul", starting in December, (Tim McGraw and Faith Hill.)

Anthony Crivello for myself and many, holds a place in our hearts for bringing the sad, dangerous but beautiful "Phantom" to life. Kristi Holden (Christine), and Andrew Ragone (Raoul), provided the perfect contrast to his tortured soul. Much has been said about this show and the performers that for me to do so would be redundant.

Anthony Crivello

To me, "The Phantom of the Opera" is a musical by definition, but truly a "horror" story. The "Phantom" experience brought me inside lonely....deep down, heart wrenching, soul crushing, loneliness. In the phantom's case, a lifetime of pain and rejection causes him to lash out at everyone, including the beautiful and innocent Christine, the object of his obsession. 

The theater for the Las Vegas "Phantom" was built after the closure of "The Art of the Motorcycle" Guggenheim museum...anyone remember that?......didn't think so. Fortunately, the "Phantom" fared much better.....over six years! When the Las Vegas version of "Phantom" opened, it was an unusual addition to the other shows on the strip. The production was trimmed to 90 minutes and had no intermission. This mattered more to the masses than the fact that it was Tony Award winning and the longest running musical on Broadway. That's okay. What was done here in Las Vegas with "Phantom" worked! It brought people to a show and style of entertainment that they may have otherwise never experienced.

In my far reaching definition one could say I am sharing a credit with Anthony Crivello. About nine of us , including Anthony, played "stage hands" in the recent film shoot for "Behind the Candelabra", (about Liberace.) Anthony, however, had the only real "part". We were extras. He wasn't...not even close. In fact I only saw him once on the set. The film premieres on HBO in the spring of 2013. 

Many people have stories and memories about their "Phantom" experience(s).
For me, the "Phantom" taught me an important lesson, if indirectly. My husband's cousin, Timothy Jerome, was playing one of the theater owners in the Broadway version of "Phantom" when we lived in NYC. We always planned to see him but were busy with "whatever". Guess the rest. You got it. He left the show for another. So we never saw Tim, in "Phantom", on Broadway. I learned from that. When someone you KNOW is in a SHOW, you!  Since then, I have been delighted to see Tim in Tarzan and My Fair Lady

My other "Phantom" experience was at the Stella Adler Academy. We had to do a musical number that was "beyond our reach". I guess this was to show us that we could bomb on stage and wouldn't die from it. I did "All I Ask of You" as a duet with Ralph, another student, in full "Phantom" regalia. We were not good. We did not die from it. Lesson learned.

I didn't know, until today that "The Phantom of the Opera" was originally a novel by Gaston Leroux.  

Best Wishes to everyone as they move on to their next experience.............Click this link to wish them farewell...

Photo courtesy of

@andrewragone - Twitter

Anthony Crivello - Man behind the Mask News 8

Las Vegas' own "Phantom of the Opera"

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