Opera Australia in association with The Really Useful Group will present Cameron Mackintosh’s spectacular new production of Andrew Lloyd Webber’s ‘The Phantom of the Opera’, finally making its highly anticipated premiere at the Sydney Opera House.
Marking almost 35 years to the day since it opened in London’s West End, before going on to become one of the most successful musicals of all time, this will be the first time in the show’s history that it will play in the iconic Joan Sutherland Theatre, Australia’s home of opera when it opens this September.
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.
In a joint statement from composer Andrew Lloyd Webber and producer Cameron Mackintosh commented enthusiastically on the show making its way to Australia.
“We are thrilled to be bringing this exciting new production to Australia with its spectacular new staging by director Laurence Connor and fabulous designs by Paul Brown and Maria Bjornson. The show has already proved a sensational box office success on National tours across the UK and the US. It is a great delight to us both that a new production, which has a totally original take on our beloved Phantom has been embraced with as much enthusiasm as the brilliant original.
“Our wonderful cast will be headed by the terrific Australian star Josh Piterman who recently scored a huge personal triumph playing the role of Phantom in London before we had to close because of the pandemic. So let our Opera begin at the Opera House!”
As an established musical theatre performer and classical crossover artist, Josh Piterman has been consistently working on Australian and UK stages for 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’.
Piterman’s impressive West End debut came as he took on the most coveted role as The Phantom in ‘The Phantom of the Opera’ in 2019. Speaking about the new tour, he shared his excitement to don the mask once again.
“Words cannot describe how I feel about being cast in this Sydney Opera House season of ‘The Phantom of the Opera’,” said Piterman.
“The role of The Phantom has truly been a lifelong dream of mine and donning the mask on the West End stage in such a legendary production was magical in every way. Experiencing the global effects of the pandemic especially on the theatre industry over the past year has been difficult for so many, which makes it an even bigger honour to now be able to play The Phantom at home, helping to resurrect our industry and bring people back to our theatres.”
Opera Australia’s Artistic Director, Lyndon Terracini, also shared his enthusiasm for the upcoming production.
“We are thrilled at Opera Australia to be presenting such an iconic piece of musical theatre at the Sydney Opera House,” commented Terracini.
“We are looking forward to working with Cameron Mackintosh and Andrew Lloyd Webber to present this new production in Australia, creating incredible theatre for audiences to enjoy and opportunities for many arts professionals to return to.”
The NSW Government is proud to support this new production of ‘Phantom’ through its tourism and major events agency, Destination NSW.
‘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.
Based on the classic novel Le Fantôme de L’Opéra by Gaston Leroux, ‘The Phantom of the Opera’ tells the story of a masked figure who lurks beneath the catacombs of the Paris Opera House, exercising a reign of terror over all who inhabit it. He falls madly in love with an innocent young soprano, Christine, and devotes himself to creating a new star by nurturing her extraordinary talents and by employing all of the devious methods at his command.
‘The Phantom of the Opera’ will open September 2021, with tickets on sale Friday, 19 April 2021. Full casting for ‘The Phantom of the Opera’ will be announced at a later date.
Want tickets? Join the waitlist now at the official ‘The Phantom of the Opera’ website.
Media Release supplied. Main Image Photography by Alastair Muir.