In 2004, I was introduced to the phenomenon, ‘The Phantom of the Opera.’ The first time I saw it was at a movie theater in Fargo, ND, and it was the Hollywood version starring Gerard Butler and Emmy Rossum. I remember walking out of the theater thinking how incredibly beautiful the story was and how talented the performers were. Over time, I wanted to know more about the story of the Phantom and see the different versions that have been produced. Thanks to my brother, who is also a very big fan of the Phantom, I was able to watch all of the film versions, read several books about it, and see the musical live at the Orpheum Theater in Omaha, NE, and Minneapolis, MN.

In 2014, I was able to study at Ramapo College of New Jersey for a semester. Being close to New York City, I knew I wanted to see ‘The Phantom of the Opera’ on Broadway. The first chance that I got, I purchased tickets for myself at the Majestic Theater. When I first sat down at my seat, I didn’t know what to expect. Because I was seeing it on Broadway, I knew that the talent and set design was going to be better than I’ve ever seen. During the opening scene, the ballet troupe takes the stage and dances to ‘Hannibal’ by Chalumeau. I think it would be interesting to find out how much they practice because they had such ‘leggiadrous’ movements. They were so fluid and synchronized; you could definitely tell how hard they had worked to perfect their performance.

According to the ‘Oxford English Dictionary,’ ‘leggiadrous’ is an adjective meaning “graceful, elegant.” Its origins are Italian and its original meaning was, “light, sprightly.” It first appeared in 1648 and its last noted appearance was in 1702. Unfortunately, it seems that ‘leggiadrous’ was very short lived, but, along with its definition, it could still be used in our modern vocabulary. The ‘Oxford English Dictionary’ even mentions that ‘leggiadrous’ is a rare and obsolete word.




S’i’ fosse foco, ardereï ‘l mondo;
s’i’ fosse vento, lo tempestarei;
s’i’ fosse acqua, i’ l’annegherei;
s’i’ fosse Dio, mandereil’ en profondo;
s’i’ fosse papa, sere’ allor giocondo,
ché tutti cristïani imbrigherei
s’i’ fosse ‘mperator, sa’ che farei?
A tutti mozzarei lo capo a tondo.
S’i’ fosse morte, andarei da mio padre;
s’i’ fosse vita, non starei con lui:
similemente faria da mi’ madre,
S’i’ fosse Cecco, com’i’ sono e fui,
torrei le donne giovani e leggiadre:
e vecchie e laide lasserei altrui.