THE PHANTOM OF THE OPERA
Historic Sydney Opera House Premiere Season Opens in 6 Weeks
The most successful musical from Andrew Lloyd Webber, and perhaps also his most popular, this exciting new production ofThe Phantom Of The Opera broke box office records at the Opera House when tickets went on sale in 2021, and now with only 6 weeks until the curtain rises, Opera Australia has announced that three final shows have been added to the season.
The anticipation is also building throughout the company with the start of rehearsals today in Sydney. They have all waited patiently to get into the rehearsal room over the past 12 months and now the moment is here as they finally start working on one of the most successful and celebrated musicals of our time.
The cast will be led by Josh Piterman in the coveted lead role of The Phantom and joining him in this new Australian production, making her Australian theatre debut, Perth’s own Amy Manford will take on the role of the ingénue Christine Daaé and Raoul, Vicomte de Chagny will be played by acclaimed musical theatre star Blake Bowden.
Starring alongside the lead cast will be Australian musical theatre stalwart David Whitney playing shrewd theatre manager Monsieur Firmin, the newly appointed theatre manager Monsieur Andrè will be played by experienced musical and opera performer Andy Morton, soprano Giuseppina Grech will play the role of opera diva Carlotta Guidicelli, seasoned musical theatre performer Jayde Westaby will take on the role of ballet mistress Madame Giry, the Italian opera singer Ubaldo Piangi will be played by classical crossover artist Paul Tabone, and newcomer Mietta White will play young ballerina Meg Giry.
Joining them will be the talented ensemble cast including Elliot Baker, Anton Berezin, Laura Bianchi-Bishop, Eleanor Blythman, Gavin Brown, Ben Clark, Bridget Costello, Andrew Dunne, Lewis Francis, Christina Gibbs, Claudia Hastings, Olivia Jenkins, Daniel Koek, Naomi Livingston, Josephine Lonergan, Aaron Lynch, Lucy MacFarlane, Kayleigh Marven, Emma McFarlane, Lachlan O'Brien, Brittany Page, Edward Smith, Anna Stephens, Tod Strike, Troy Sussman, Raphael Wong, Jack Wunsch and Elisha Zion Lee.
Josh Piterman scored a huge personal triumph with an impressive West End debut as he took on the most coveted role of The Phantom in the London production in 2019. He is an established musical theatre performer and classical crossover artist who has been working consistently on Australian and UK stages over the past 15 years. His past credits include being a part of international pop opera group The Ten Tenors, Tony in the 2010 Australian production of West Side Story, Bustopher Jones/Gus/Growltiger in the 2015/16 Australian season of Cats (a role that won him the Green Room Award for best supporting actor in a Musical), Corny Collins in the UK tour of Hairspray and Gerry Goffin in the 2017/18 Australian tour of Beautiful: The Carole King Musical.
Born and raised in Perth, Amy Manford has had an exciting start to her career after graduating from WAAPA and making her way to London. She completed a Masters degree at The Royal College of Music whilst landing her first role on the West End, cast as the Christine alternate in the original London production of The Phantom Of The Opera in 2017. During her time in London, she also had the privilege of performing for Prince Charles at Buckingham Palace and for Prince Harry and Meghan Markle. This role marks Amy’s debut in a major musical in Australia.
Blake Bowden has starred on many Australian stages with his most acclaimed performance to date, leading the cast in the Australian production of The Book of Mormon in the lead role of Elder Price, garnering him a Helpmann Award nomination for Best Male Actor in a Musical in 2019. Blake has also starred in productions of Fiddler on the Roof, South Pacific, Sweeney Todd, West Side Story and The Boy From Oz Arena Spectacular with Hugh Jackman.
This spectacular new staging by Cameron Mackintosh premiered with a record-breaking sell-out tour of the UK followed by a 7-year tour of the United States which grossed over US$400 million and thrilled critics and audiences alike. Australia is now only the third country to see this new Phantom with its beloved and thrilling score including the hit songs The Music of the Night, All I Ask of You and Masquerade. With stunning new staging and scenic design, Maria Björnson’s iconic original costumes and many special effects including a spectacular new realisation of the show’s chandelier. It will be performed in Australia by a cast and orchestra of 65, making it one of the largest musical productions ever in Australia.
Directed by Laurence Connor with choreography by Scott Ambler, set design by Paul Brown, Tony Award®-winning original costume design by Maria Björnson, lighting design by Tony Award®-winner Paule Constable and sound design by Mick Potter, The Phantom Of The Opera has music by Andrew Lloyd Webber, lyrics by Charles Hart (with additional lyrics by Richard Stilgoe), book by Richard Stilgoe and Andrew Lloyd Webber, orchestrations by David Cullen and Andrew Lloyd Webber. This new production is overseen by Matthew Bourne and Cameron Mackintosh.
The Phantom Of The Opera in Australia is directed by Seth Sklar-Heyn and produced by Cameron Mackintosh, The Really Useful Group and Opera Australia.
The timeless story, the unforgettable score, and an undeniable obsession that could never die.
Photo by Alastair Muir.