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What's it like being part of one of the most famous musicals of all time? Incredible. There we go, job done. Ok – send the cheque in the mail. Make sure to add enough zeros. And shift that decimal point to the right a bit. 

​But seriously, that's not why you are reading this. You are reading this to find out what it's really like. The hours and hours of preparation. The hours of getting dialogue right. The hours of singing the same four notes to get harmonies correct. The hours of...well, you get the idea. Let's take a step back. What do you need to put on a production of this magnitude? You need one hell of a production team. The set is ginormous, the costumes magnificent. The props are many and varied. Plenty going on behind-the-scenes in this show and the crew is all over it. Check. You need a chorus capable of singing an extremely demanding score. And when I say demanding, I mean it. I sing bass, a part that tends to be lucky enough to rumble along at the bottom with relatively simple harmony lines. Phantom pushes us to the absolute top of our ranges, only to drop down to the very bottom a bar later. Forget beautiful complimentary harmonies, clashes exist throughout the score, making pitching incredibly difficult. Substitute ridiculously high notes for the low notes and you have the tenor line. The altos always have it tough and the sopranos have to sing up where only wolves can hear them. It really does stretch any singer to their limits. Thankfully, this cast is up to the task. Check. ​You need dancers who can pull off ballet style movement. Ballet is featured twice in the show, and always at the centre of attention. Beautiful, graceful leaps and bounds are but a necessity and once again, the dancers show off the goods. Check. You need a direction team who are able to extract their vision from the cast. In this case, they are ably managed by Director Bill Munro. Bill has directed just about every other show over the past 20 years and has excelled at putting on classic after classic. Check. ​

You need principals who are up to the job. The principals carry this show, with some numbers having incredible seven-part harmonies to contend with (there are seven principals – you do the math). Madam and Meg Giry fulfill their roles perfectly. Our managers (with their ever-so-slight sleaziness) add some fantastic comedy to the show and push it along fabulously. The operatic soprano and tenor Carlotta and Piangi not only have voices that amaze, but their acting is sublime. Truly comedic at times and will provide fantastic relief for the audience. I've only seen it about a thousand times and I'm still laughing. Then, our two principal men. Our Raoul exudes statesman-line gravitas every time he walks on the stage, perfect for the aristocratic role he plays. The Phantom's voice is ear-ringingly powerful, it fills the rehearsal theatre like no-one I've ever heard. His acting is incredible, you'll feel the Phantom's pain, trust me. Finally, our Christine. Words cannot describe it. I have never heard so much applause in rehearsals.  I assure you, you will be blown away.​

​So are all the ingredients there? Oh yes. You'd be a fool to miss what is the biggest production Townsville will have seen. So I'll see you at the theatre.
Inside The Phantom's Lair 
By Kevin Price

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