team opera

Hearken to me, haters of Erik, antishippers of E/C:
“If I am the Phantom it is because man’s hatred has made me so and if I am to be saved it is because your love redeems me.”
Or in the musical the fact that when the Phantom first tells Christine he loves her… It is also the very last thing he tells her.
Or the fact that Erik in fact happily dies of a broken heart since he loves her so much and she gave him everything with so little. The fact that he never won, he never knew any kindness and he had to go through some extremely dark places and still – still he could believe in love and beauty, after a life where he’d had neither. 

Erik is not a villain. Erik is no evil mastermind. He is a dreamer beaten down, a lover of beauty mocked by fate, a pure heart delving in loneliness, a magnificent mind held back by the sorrowful reality of the body. 

And he wasn’t about taking, not until everything went wrong, not after he was redeemed. He was gentle and he wanted to give Christine everything. He did not care about fame or money – all that was for her. But in the end he gave her everything by letting her leave with the Vicomte.

All he ever asked for? 
A normal life. A living bride. Someone to touch him and not die.

This gif is from the triumph commonly known as the 25th anniversary. Ramin honours Erik’s character with his Final Lair scene. And Sierra does the same for Christine. This gif destroys me softly. Christine stops to glance back one last time and this is what the Phantom does. Nods. Let’s her go. Acknowledges that everything went wrong, that he “loved her too much and dived too deep”. She knows this, too. But that doesn’t stop love. In fact, it makes it spark, bloom, shine. This is the moment they both finally see clearly. (//In the book this moment is the one where E/C cry together.)

This right here is what makes The Phantom of the Opera a tragedy. Not the murders, not Erik’s own demise, not his spiralling into hurtful madness. The tragedy of his character comes out in the light of his redemption. The tragedy of all-consuming love which is unfulfilled and still gives all, takes life, makes one human. 

This kind of love story never gets old. Innocent and easy as Christine and Raoul’s love might’ve been, their story alone wouldn’t have lived this long. PotO is the Ghost’s love story, and love he did, with a fervour unequaled. And that took the courage of a hero, as did seeing clearly, as did letting her go. The Phantom of the Opera is the hero of his own story, and he never knew it.

You can play the Phantom, you can play Ariel, you can play Danny Zuko, you can play Annie, you can play Valjean, you can play Elphaba, but until you play Milky White you ain’t shit in the musical theatre world.

Invention on a Six-Note Chord
Grundheber, Behrens, Langridge, Abbado and Wiener Philharmoniker
Invention on a Six-Note Chord

James Levine conducted Wozzeck at the Met on Saturday night. Backlit from the pit, his crazy Jew fro turned into this blinding halo, as if he had floated down from heaven just for the occasion, just for us. All of Wozzeck was divine, but during this short interlude towards the end of the piece… I couldn’t breathe. It was physically impossible. I kept leaning forward in my seat, mouth agape, in awe. Turned out he truly was heaven sent and through his conducting had opened the roof of the Met and summoned God to descend and warn us that we could be Wozzeck, that we are all Wozzecks now. Beware. 

I listened to this section on repeat on the train ride home tonight, continually rewinding to relish in the horn climax specifically. As I jaywalked across Third Avenue, the horns blaring, timpani drum accenting the judgment, I thought: This is how I want to die, to sounds this glorious and epic. I looked up and saw the M103 barreling towards me, jostled back to reality and sprinted away from the red moon, to the safety of the curb. 

“Cross-Quintet” of Nichigeki Dancing team - Shochiku girl opera company 日劇ダンシングチーム・松竹少女歌劇 - From right to left : Minami Satoe 南里枝, Mizunoe Takiko 水の江瀧 (1915-2009), Arthur Misuzu アーサー美鈴, Orie Tsuban オリエ津阪 & Akizuki Emiko 秋月惠美子, in Sunday Mainichi サンデー毎日 - Osaka, Japan - October 1938

Source :

The 2010-2011 Season; or Why I Have No Money

My mother asked why, despite my raise this past year, I either didn’t pay down debt or acquire some savings. I created her a list:


  • A Little Night Music (3 times)
  • Promises, Promises
  • Women on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown (2 times)
  • A Life in the Theater
  • Brief Encounter
  • The Importance of Being Earnest
  • American Idiot
  • The Book of Mormon
  • The Normal Heart
  • Arcadia

Off Broadway

  • John Gabriel Borkman 
  • Mistakes Were Made 
  • Small Craft Warnings
  • The Other Place
  • The Intelligent Homosexual’s Guide to Capitalism and Socialism with a Key to the Scriptures


  • Lost in the Stars
  • Where’s Charley

Special Events

  • Stritchy Reading of The Pretty Trap (Etc.) 
  • Stritchy at 92Y
  • Kate Baldwin, American Songbook Series
  • Stephen Schwartz Concert at NYCO

Team Opera (miss u, NYCO!)

  • A Quiet Place
  • La Traviata
  • Nixon in China (3 times)
  • Le Comte Ory
  • Monodramas (2 times)
  • Elixir of Love
  • Wozzeck 
  • Seance on a Wet Afternoon
  • Ariadne auf Naxos

“And this doesn’t count the pre-show drinks and post-show dinners, let alone friends’ shows and concerts and all that jazz, Mama,” I said. “As long as you think you’re making adult choices,” she replied. “I just wonder how long this can continue." 

"Well, the new season starts tomorrow night with 4000 Miles and then there’s Master Class and I still want to catch The Motherfucker with the Hat and Death Takes a Holiday starts soon and this fall I can finally see Other Desert Cities and then when the Met starts back up… OMG!” She interrupts. 

“Adult choices, Mac. Adult choices.”

“The kind of adult I want to be simply has to see Anna Bolena, Mom. Simply has to.”