Yeston & Kopit's Phantom Haunts Hollywood, FL, Starting Dec. 31

News   Yeston & Kopit's Phantom Haunts Hollywood, FL, Starting Dec. 31
Maury Yeston and Arthur Kopit's musical rendering of "The Phantom of the Opera," Phantom, one of he biggest musical theatre successes that never saw the lights of Broadway, gets another regional staging at the Hollywood Playhouse in Florida, beginning Dec. 31.

Executive artistic director Andy Rogow's staging (through Feb 16, 2003) incorporates various parts of the playhouse itself, with designer David Sherman's stairways leading from the balcony to the stage and two two-story turning units displaying the various levels, nooks and crannies of the opera house.

A cast of 16 is led by Tally Sessions as the Phantom, who falls for the soprano Christine, played by Jennifer Zimmerman. The cast also includes Jay Stuart and Louralene Snedeker.

Designers are Estela Vrancovic (costumes), Ginny Adams (lighting) and Steve Shapiro (sound). Andrew Fiacco will choreograph and music direction is by Eric Alsford.

Composer-lyricist Yeston (Nine, Grand Hotel) penned music and lyrics for Phantom. The song, "Home," has found a home in cabarets and on recordings beyond the eerily romantic stage show. Yeston and Kopit collaborated on Nine, which gets a Broadway revival in 2003 by Roundabout Theatre Company. Their Phantom premiered at Houston's Theatre Under the Stars in 1991. A cast album preserves the score. Observers say the show dips more deeply into the Phantom's pain and motivations than the internationally popular Andrew Lloyd Webber The Phantom of the Opera. Yeston's Phantom has enjoyed countless stagings around the world in the past 10 years.

"Phantom never had a flagship production on Broadway," Yeston explained to Playbill On-Line earlier this year. "In the more than 800 independent productions of Phantom all over the world, from dinner theatres to vast venues to Europe, every single one is created by an individual director, an individual theatre — they do their own costumes, they get a sense of their own set. They all work, which is very gratifying to me. But I think that's the essence of writing a successful musical: I believe you don't really know you've done your job until you go to a high school and you see them do it and you're crying at the end." For ticket information, call (954) 922-0404 or visit

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