Dream team of ‘˜Phantom...’

22 October 2012 / 4 years 5 days ago

Source: The Korea HeraldOne is from Broadway, one from Australia, and the other from South Africa.Three singers, each from a different country, will be starring in the upcoming run of Andrew Lloyd Webber’s “Phantom of the Opera‘ in Seoul.The main cast of the upcoming run consists of veteran Broadway actor Brad Little, Australian actress Claire Lyon, and South African actor Anthony Downing. The three are performing for the first time as a team during the run in Korea. Considered as one of the world’s most beloved musicals, the piece tells the story of the beautiful soprano Christine, and a mysterious, disfigured musical genius who becomes obsessed with her. For Brad Little, who has played the role of the Phantom for more than 2,000 times, Korea is a familiar place to be. He played the Phantom during the show’s Seoul run in 2005, and appeared as the controlling American Colonel Grayson in last year’s Korean musical “Tears of Heaven.‘ He used to communicate with his Korean fans through his “Cyworld‘ ‘• a local social network service; he now uses Kakao Story to do the same thing. He knows what “chimaek‘ ‘• a local slang referring to a mixed drink made of soju and beer ‘• means, while the maximum amount of soju he can take is a bottle and a half.“I’ve never experienced what it is like to be hit by the wall of sound,‘ Little told reporters during a press meeting held in Seoul on Thursday, recalling his 2005 Seoul run.“And that was what I experienced for the first time in my career. The wall of sound at the curtail call that came from the (Korean) audience almost felt like your hair was pulled back. It was just amazing. They are passionate, intelligent audience that I have so much respect for.‘Playing the disfigured musical genius who is madly in love for more than 2,000 times can be emotionally draining, but working with different musical directors and casts has helped him realize there are many ways to play the role. “The Phantom is very difficult to ruin,‘ he said. “You’ve got to try really hard to play a bad Phantom, because there are so many different ways play this role. And none of them are really wrong. You can play him angry, sympathetic, pitiful. You can think of so many adjectives that go with this character. And they all work. You don’t find that often with other roles.‘Meanwhile, actress Claire Lyon has lived a life that’s very much like her character Christine’s, who starts out as a ballet dancer before becoming an opera singer.“I feel like my career has been very similar to what Christine’s is on the stage,‘ Lyon told reporters.“I started off learning classical ballet when I was three years old. And I did that for 15 years. Then I went into studying music and started off professionally working with Opera Australia. So the two quite different forms of art, ballet and the opera, is exactly what Christine does. It’s quite bizarre how parallel my story and Christine’s story are.‘The actress, who said she is also excited to shop in Korea during her stay here, already has been interacting with the local fans via her Twitter account.South African singer Anthony Downing has been cast as the viscount Raoul who also falls for Christine. Downing is said to be a classical composer as well as a pianist off-stage. He said he is currently working on writing his own musical, which he would not “say much about,‘ while the last work he wrote was a cello sonata.“Being in the world of a composer is a very introverted life as opposed to performers are very much extroverts,‘ Downing said. “So I forget about composition when I am onstage.‘The show opens on Dec. 7 at Blue Square’s Samsung Electronics Hall in Hannam-dong, Seoul. Tickets range from 50,000 won to 160,000 won. A 15 percent discount is available for those who have seen the show during the previous runs in Korea.

korea, musical
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