Photo Flash: PHANTOM Tour Becomes First to Reach 7,000 Performances

The longest-running show in Broadway history, Andrew Lloyd Webber's THE PHANTOM OF THE OPERA, is set to reach another unprecedented milestone. With its 8PM evening performance on Wednesday, January 27, the musical's third national tour, called the Music Box Company, will become the first consecutive-running national tour ever to reach 7,000 performances. The occasion will be marked by a special pre-show celebration at the Bob Carr Performing Arts Center in Orlando, Florida at 7:15 PM. The milestone will come just one day after the original Broadway production celebrates its 22nd anniversary in New York. The Cameron Mackintosh/Really Useful Group, Inc. production, directed by Harold Prince, continues to play Orlando through February 14.

Worldwide, over 65,000 performances of THE PHANTOM OF THE OPERA have been seen by 100 million people in 27 countries and 144 cities. Its international success - equally staggering - is represented by total worldwide grosses estimated at over $5 billion. This colossal figure makes PHANTOM the most successful entertainment venture of all time, surpassing not only any other stage production, but also far surpassing the world's highest-grossing film Avatar (at $1.859 billion) and such other blockbusters as Titanic, The Lord of the Rings, Jurassic Park and Star Wars. There are currently ten productions around the world: London, New York, Budapest (Hungary), Nagoya (Japan), Warsaw (Poland), Copenhagen (Denmark), Seoul (Korea), Buenos Aires (Argentina), the U.S. National Tour and a revised production in Las Vegas at The Venetian. The Broadway production is the winner of 7 Tony Awards including Best Musical.

Based on the classic novel 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 third national tour currently stars Tim Martin Gleason in the title role with Marni Raab as Christine and Sean MacLaughlin as Raoul. The musical also co-stars D.C. Anderson (Monsieur Andre), Bruce Winant (Monsieur Firmin), Kim Stengel (Carlotta), Nancy Hess (Madame Giry), David Gaschen (Piangi) and Jessica Bishop (Meg Giry). At certain performances, Kelly Jeanne Grant plays the role of "Christine."
THE PHANTOM OF THE OPERA has music by Andrew Lloyd Webber and is directed by Harold Prince. Lyrics are by Charles Hart (with additional lyrics by Richard Stilgoe) and the book is by Richard Stilgoe and Andrew Lloyd Webber. THE PHANTOM OF THE OPERA has production design by the late Maria Bjornson, lighting by Andrew Bridge and sound design by Mick Potter with original sound by Martin Levan. Musical staging and choreography is by Gillian Lynne. Orchestrations are by David Cullen and Andrew Lloyd Webber.

The performance schedule for THE PHANTOM OF THE OPERA in Orlando is Tuesday through Saturday evenings at 8 PM, Sunday evenings at 6:30 PM, with matinees on Saturdays at 2 PM and Sundays at 1 PM. Ticket prices range from $30 - $75. To order tickets visit or call 407-839-3900.

Photo credit: Richmond Gibbs

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