"Think of me, think of me fondly when you said goodbye...."
I began my curiousity with Phantom of the Opera when David Archuleta sang "Think of Me" during his American Idol days. I eventually bought the DVD wherein the Phantom was played by Gerard Butler and I thought that the musical was great. I was even surprised that Gerard was able to sing that well (he is really talented).
Then October 14 last year, something so memorable happened to me: I met the entire Phantom of the Opera cast during their last day here in Manila! It was not the exact day that I watch this famous musical play. I watch it a week ago that time but I was not aware that the cast were nice enough to meet the audience at the stage door after their performance. That's when my friend Chrissie and I decided to meet and be there on their last day. I wasn't all prepared that time, unlike those fans (they are also called Phans) that it was only Chrissie (thanks so much again girl!) who urged me to also write a letter to the guy who will be the forever Phantom of my life, Jonathan Roxmouth. He is an actor from South Africa and all I can say is this guy is really talented! Even if you watched the videos online of the different Phantom actors, I think there is something unique about him while playing the role of the Phantom. You can't help but be moved with the way he delivered his lines and the songs given how difficult it is to play the role. I am hoping that I can see him again someday. I heard that there is an online petition going on so as music stores/productions would bring him again here in Manila. I hope that can happen soon!
Phantom of the Opera was the first musical play with international cast that I watch ever. I've planned on watching Mama Mia before but that plan did not push through. After watching it, my view of the musical play in general totally shifted. The entire cast was so amazing! Everyone of them are really good in their roles may it be major or minor ones. You could really feel that they were giving their all every time they appear on stage. The production, the set, everything in it was outstanding. And just a trivia, there was one Filipino actor who was part of the POTO cast. His name is Mr.Conrado "Dondi" Calnea Ong III. I felt really proud of him when I heard about this. I hope I can also share my passion in singing to everyone someday.
Despite the fact that these people are famous in their craft, after spending some time with them after they show made me realized how nice and approachable they all are. Everyone was able to have pictures with them, they signed every POTO items of the fans etc. I felt that they were very thankful with the warm welcome of the Filipinos to their production and they just genuinely happy that we loved their performances. I wish all artists are like them.
By the way, I've joined a Phantom of the Opera Manila group on Facebook and I was surprised that they are really showing support to the cast even if the shows are abroad! They are that hardcore right? I wish I had the means to do that. The nearest they've been previously was Singapore. Too bad I booked a promo fare and that was still for next year. I read somewhere that their next destination is Shanghai. I'll think about that one if time and money permit it.
And now you will know what I will do when the Wicked cast will arrive here next year haha! If you are watching that one, then maybe we can organize a meet up during one of their performances. I heard that the schedule got extended so go and buy tickets already. Hope to see you at the stage door soon and have a great day!
With my Phantom, Jonathan Roxmouth
Hooray for the dashing Anthony!
Lovely Emilie Lyn
With Sir Dondi! Mabuhay ang Pinoy!
The Amazing Andrea