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The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

Texas A&M Aggies guard Tyrece Radford (23) blocks Arkansas Razorbacks guard Tramon Mark (12) during Texas A&M’s game against Arkansas on Tuesday, Feb. 20, 2024, at Reed Arena. (Ishika Samant/The Battalion)
Free falling
February 20, 2024
Jace LaViolette (17) an Head Coach Jim Schlossnagle celebrating a home run during Texas A&Ms game against UIW on Tuesday, Feb. 20, 2024 at Olsen Field. (Hannah Harrison/The Battalion)
GALLERY: Baseball vs. UIW
February 20, 2024
Texas A&M Aggies guard Tyrece Radford (23) blocks Arkansas Razorbacks guard Tramon Mark (12) during Texas A&M’s game against Arkansas on Tuesday, Feb. 20, 2024, at Reed Arena. (Ishika Samant/The Battalion)
Free falling
February 20, 2024
Jace LaViolette (17) an Head Coach Jim Schlossnagle celebrating a home run during Texas A&Ms game against UIW on Tuesday, Feb. 20, 2024 at Olsen Field. (Hannah Harrison/The Battalion)
GALLERY: Baseball vs. UIW
February 20, 2024

Phantoms’ brings Broadway hits

Audiences will be treated to the music of the night with the opening of the world premiere concert event The Phantoms of the Opera, which will close the 40th season of MSC OPAS.
Anne Black, executive director of MSC OPAS, say the concert event is not the familiar Phantom of the Opera.
Its completely different, she said. Its a retrospective of all of the different versions of Phantom, and the audiences will get to enjoy music and dialogue from all of them.
The concert was brought to the stage after requests brought by MSC OPAS patrons, most of whom wanted to see the famed Andrew Lloyd Weber musical at A&M.
Its the 40th anniversary of MSC OPAS and we wanted to do something special, Black said. So we collaborated with the University and the community. One thing we noticed on the surveys after our previous shows is that one show people really wanted to see was Phantom of the Opera.
Due to space and budget constraints, Black said performing the classic musical wasnt possible, so she sought out an alternative method of production, calling producers in New York. Producer Neil Berg was excited to get involved in the project.
Im a lover of Broadway history, Berg said. Its my life and my passion and everything that I do, so when Anne Black called and wanted to do a version of Phantom, I was excited.
The concept behind the show, a concert retrospective of the versions of Phantom, was simple, Berg said.
Were going to lead the audience on a tour through all the different versions of Phantom, I think six or seven, and at the end of the night, let the audience decide which one they like the best, Berg said.
The planning of the concert took about a year and a half and required extensive research.
Once we decided we were doing a concert, we had to decide what we were going to do with it, Berg said. We decided to tell the history behind the novel and all the different versions, so I had to do a lot of research. I went on the Paris Opera House tour and read history books. I had to be an expert at this.
Fans of the Andrew Lloyd Weber production can rest assured that they will still hear some of the more beloved pieces of the show. Dixie Carroll, senior psychology major and chorus member, said she wants fans to enjoy the show, but also find more music to love.
Fans of Andrew Lloyd Weber will get to hear the chorus do Masquerade and the actors do All I Ask of You and Phantom of the Opera, Carroll said. Whats more important is that theyll get to see all the different versions, even the ones that were not as popular. I hope they find a whole new array of music to love.
Besides the chorus made of students in the vocal performance department, fans of Phantom will also get to see big name Broadway talent come to perform at Rudder Auditorium.
Fans will get to see some of the famous stars of Phantom right here in College Station, the best of the best, Berg said. Theyll get to see Brad Little, the most renowned Phantom, having played him in over 3,000 performances. Theyll get to see Sandra Joseph, the longest running Christine on Broadway, about 10 years. Theyll get to see these big stars and hear some of the famous songs, but also get to see these stars do other versions of Phantom and other versions of their characters.
Berg said his goal for the show is that audience members realize the scope of the project and how important it is.
People in New York are wishing to be in Texas right now for this, said Berg. A show like this in New York would sell out in Carnegie Hall for months. People are coming from New York, Dallas, Austin, Oklahoma City, to see this. I dont think people truly understand what theyre getting.

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