The Phantom of the Opera at the Royal Albert Hall (Sous-titres français)
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In celebration of the 25th Anniversary of Andrew Lloyd Webber’s The Phantom of the Opera, Cameron Mackintosh produced a unique, spectacular staging of the musical on a scale which had never been seen before. Inspired by the original staging by Hal Prince and Gillian Lynne, this lavish, fully-staged production set in the sumptuous Victorian splendour of London’s legendary Royal Albert Hall features a cast and orchestra of over 200, plus some very special guest appearances.
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Universal regularly does some frankly screwy things with their audio options on their music or concert titles, regularly having their Blu-ray discs default to Dolby Digital 5.1 tracks, and then having what most home theater aficionados are probably going to want, a lossless 5.1 option (usually DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1), as the third choice. Phantom of the Opera at The Royal Albert Hall 25th Anniversary ups that oddness on two levels: first, the disc defaults to a standard Dolby Digital 2.0 mix, and then, even more peculiarly, the disc does not allow easy toggling to the lossless DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 track that is included. Instead you need to either go back to the Main Menu or the Pop-Up Menu and access Setup and make the appropriate audio choice there. That slight difficulty aside, for the most part the 5.1 track is incredibly well rendered, at least after the main singing gets underway. For some reason the Prologue is mixed rather low (or was inadequately miked), and the Auctioneer is a bit hard to hear. Once the main thrust of the show gets underway, the DTS- HD Master Audio 5.1 track easily supports everything from the coloratura warbling to the synth-laden moments of the score. Balance is excellent between the orchestra and the singers and The Royal Albert Hall's natural ambience is caught magnificently on this track.
If you have seen the Film version of "The Phantom of the Opera" before, put that out of your mind before watching this version. This version is the full length musical, but it is physically scaled down for the Concert hall. A normal production of Phantom isn't quite like this version, but it's close enough to given you the experience of it. (A normal production requires a many very large set pieces which aren't used here.)
Ramin Karimloo and Sierra Boggess play the Phantom and Christine respectively. These are the same roles they play on the Musical's sequel "Love never dies" so you can't get more authentic than this.
The one significant difference is how Act I ends with the Chandelier. In the normal Phantom production the Chandelier appears in the first scene, on stage, and then rises above the audience and remains there until it falls at the end of Act I. In this production, the effect given is the chandelier "exploding" by having explosives fire on it and then dimming the lights around it. It's still effective.
Buy this on Bluray if you can get it. It's definitely worth it if Phantom won't be playing in your area for a very long time. The DVD version is also available on VOD (Amazon on Demand) in the US.
Most recent customer reviews
I'm changing my review. I do love The Phantom of the Opera but I just tried watching the DVD on my xbox360 and it couldn't play do to region input. Read morePublished 2 months ago by Amazon Customer
Gorgeous... Best ever collection. I worked on stage, and know all limitations but the camera catches all critical angles as expected. Top job.Published 4 months ago by Henry Cheung
Great! A wonderful performance that I can watch over and over again!Published 5 months ago by Amazon Customer
Best production ever! Originally saw this broadcast live at the cinema and was enthralled by the cast. The whole thing was wonderful and the staging is fantastic. Read morePublished 11 months ago by Tinuviel7
awesome opera seen it 7 times in a row first time was before it opened in tonmornto and I got hooked on it amazing displays and stage handlingPublished 12 months ago by david kodba