Love Never Dies, The Phantom Of The Opera Sequel, Comes To Boston

Posted January 17, 2018 by Brian Keaney in Theater & Arts
Love Never Dies

It is difficult to top  a play seen by more than 130 million people around the world and which has won more than 50 international awards. In Love Never Dies, Andrew Lloyd Webber’s spellbinding sequel to The Phantom of the Opera, he describes the follow up effort as “Probably the finest one I could ever, ever hope for.” Boston theater goers can now decide for themselves whether the sequel lives up to the original in the Broadway in Boston production running at the Boston Opera House in late January through mid-February.

Ten years after the Phantom has disappeared from the Paris Opera House and escaped the mob at the end of the original play, we find him living on Coney Island in New York City with the freak shows and roller coasters that made the island famous. Christine Daaé, his his one true love and musical protégée, however, remains in Paris where she is in a failing marriage to Raoul. The dashing hero of the original, Raoul has now become an abusive drunk who has lost most of his money gambling, and resents his wife as much as he ignores their son. The couple, along with ten year old Gustave, are enticed to travel to New York where the pecuniary benefits of singing for Manhattan crowds may save them from financial ruin. In a last ditch effort to win Christine, the Phantom entices the unsuspecting family to Coney Island and all of its glittering spectacle.

Baron Lloyd-Webber is credited with both the music and the book, and with the latter he shares credit with Ben Elton. Simon Phillips provides direction and Glenn Slater wrote the lyrics, with additional lyrics by Charles Hart. The leads are played by Gardar Thor Cortes as the Phantom, and Meghan Picerno is cast as Christine. Gustave is portrayed by Jake Heston Miller, and his father Raoul is played by Sean Thompson. Karen Mason is in the role of the conniving Madame Giry, and her daughter, Meg, is performed by Mary Michael Patterson.

Opening on January 30th and closing on February 11th, the play is shown weekday evenings from Tuesday through Friday. On Saturdays and Sundays, there are two performances, a matinee and an evening showing. Promotional materials for the show says “Love Never Dies is a dazzling new production, which takes audiences on a thrilling rollercoaster ride of intrigue, obsession and romance. Be seduced by the beautiful; sometimes magical and poetic; sometimes joyful; and occasionally melancholic score.”

The Cape Cod Times had less effusive praise for the show, however.  Their critic opined that while “this production is gorgeous, its setting fascinating and performers laudable, for the longtime “Phantom” fan the plot just does not add up.”  For newcomers to the franchise, however, she believes they will enjoy the show more than those who are already familiar with the characters.

Tickets are available on the Broadway in Boston website.