As the theatre industry continues to return to life after prolonged COVID induced closures, Australian audiences will soon be able to witness yet another Broadway classic.
In addition to Lin-Manuel Miranda’s Hamilton, which is currently playing at the Lyric Theatre, Andrew Lloyd Weber’s The Phantom of the Opera — Broadway’s longest running musical — is coming to the Sydney Opera House in September.
The much-lauded stage show will run for eight weeks with Josh Piterman in the titular role. The Australian actor, whose previous credits include West Side Story, Cats and Beautiful: The Carole King Musical, was performing the part in London when the pandemic hit, shuttering theatres all over the world.
“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,” Piterman said in a statement.
“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.”
The production will mark the first time Australian audiences will have access to the long-running production since 2007, with the cast and orchestra of 65 making it one of the largest musical productions in Australian history.
The musical is based on Gaston Leroux’s novel, Le Fantôme de L’Opéra, and tells the story of a mysterious masked figure who inhabits the catacombs below the Paris Opera House, terrorising all within. But when he falls madly in love with a young soprano, Christine, he devotes himself to fostering her talents – employing devious methods to ensure her success.
News of the musical’s Sydney run is not only great news for theatre lovers but for the economy with the musical expected to attract more than 10,000 visitors to Sydney and close to $6.14 million in revenue.
The Phantom of the Opera will play at the Joan Sutherland Theatre, Sydney Opera House, from 2 September to 29 October 2021. Tickets are on sale April 19.
Join the waitlist here.