Review of “The Phantom of the Opera” in China

Review of

The drama “The Phantom of the Opera” composed by Andrew Lloyd Webber was performed in English in Beijing, China last December. The whole theater was filled; I was one member of the audience. I was thrilled to see this production, and I was moved by its message, which I want to share with you in this review.

This drama represents a scary event that happened in a famous theater in Paris. “The Phantom of the Opera” was a disfigured person who had an ugly appearance, but a beautiful voice and a good understanding of the mechanics of theatre production. Because of his dreadful face, no one wanted to watch his shows; thus, he hid in the basement of the theater, using his production skills to scare the staff and make them believe that he was a ghost and make them listen to his orders. Meanwhile, he fell in love with a girl, Christine, a dancer who wants to become an actress. He started to secretly inspire her singing potential during her dreams. With the Phantom’s help, Christine became the most famous actress in Paris. Her dainty acts made another man, Raoul, fall in love with her, and she started having feelings for Raoul. This love triangle led the story to a more complex, but exciting level.

The singing skill of the actors and actresses was, of course, brilliant. In my opinion, the actor who played the Phantom had the best singing voice; one week after watching this opera, I still remembered the melody of the songs that the Phantom sang. And I can still imagine Christine and him dancing on the stage. The sudden drop of the gorgeous chandelier; the lovely outfits; the memorable soundtrack from the orchestra on the side of the stage; and the touching plot are all worth seeing.

However, there is something more important that “The Phantom of the Opera” offers the audience. The story of the Phantom tells us that it is okay for a person to have an undesirable face, but it is not okay for him or her to have an evil heart. Some people judge others by their face, but some do not. I believe if a person has a good heart, although he might have a scary face, someday he will find another person who’s willing to befriend him. If the Phantom did not keep hatred in his heart, maybe others would not hurt his feelings. If he ever decided to show people his excellent talents in a good way and with a positive heart, maybe they would not disrespect him, and maybe he could have become a popular singer. If he had appreciated Christine’s compassion instead of forcing her to love him, maybe Christine would not have turned her compassion for him to enmity. In short, the Phantom’s distorted heart destroyed his chance for a better life.

But was it totally the Phantom’s fault? No. Before he ever met Christine, everyone hated him because of his appearance. Even the Phantom’s mother abandoned him. The mask that the Phantom used to cover his face was the first item his mother gave him. This little life had never received love from others.

In real life, there are many reflections of the Phantom around us. Think about the homeless children. Maybe they never had a chance to see their parents. Maybe other children are laughing at them because they do not have a place to live. Think about the disabled people. Maybe they’ve been scorned by others because of their disabilities. Think about them; if they never received care and love, how do they know how to love others? It is hard and unfair for them to just give. It’s easy to understand how the disrespect, disdain, and dislike they received from the people around them, might turn to hostility, just like it did for the Phantom.

Thus, “The Phantom of the Opera” also infers to us that we should help these people. It is time for us to give love to them. It does not have to be something big. Christine didn’t marry the Phantom, but she did kiss him. However, that little kiss let the Phantom see hope; there is someone who cares about him. It was like a flashlight, illuminating the road that kept the Phantom from going to hell and led him to righteousness. For us, we can make some comforting cards or crafts and give them to poor people; we can go to homeless shelters to talk with them; we can help decorate their rooms, etc. We just need to do some small gestures of kindness that let them know that others care about them, and that they are not alone.

Love the people around you!