Beginning Monday 3rd October, Howard McGillin, Broadway’s longest-running Phantom, will return to the title role in The Phantom of the Opera at The Majestic Theatre (247 West 44th Street). He’s been specially selected by producer Cameron Mackintosh, composer Andrew Lloyd Webber and director Harold Prince to be the “man behind the mask” when the musical becomes the longest-running production in Broadway history on 9th January 2006. On that date, Phantom will play performance #7,486 and break the record set by current champ, Cats.
Mr. McGillin has played over 1,200 performances as the Phantom, more than any other actor in the New York production. He succeeds current star Hugh Panaro, who is leaving the production to play the title role in the new Elton John musical Lestat. Mr. Panaro’s final performance will be 1st October.
Howard McGillin has worked extensively in the theatre, as well as in film and television. He is currently starring as Captain Hook opposite Cathy Rigby in the national tour of Peter Pan. On Broadway and in London’s West End, his starring roles include his record-setting performance in The Phantom of the Opera, Mack Sennett in Mack and Mabel, Molina in Kiss of the Spider Woman, Kodaly in She Loves Me, Archibald Craven in The Secret Garden, Billy Crocker in Anything Goes (Tony and Drama Desk nominations), John Jasper in The Mystery of Edwin Drood (Tony and Drama Desk nominations, Theatre World Award) and Sunday in the Park with George. He starred in the world premiere of Stephen Sondheim’s Bounce at the Goodman Theatre in Chicago and the Kennedy Center in D.C., where he was nominated for a Helen Hayes Award for his performance. He was nominated for Drama Desk Award for his New York Theatrical debut in the NYSF production of La Boheme. He last appeared Off-Broadway in the Moss Hart-Irving Berlin review As Thousands Cheer with the Drama Department. He has appeared in numerous movies, miniseries and movies for television and can be heard on numerous books on tape. His solo CD, Howard McGillin: Where Time Stands Still, is available online.
Presented by Cameron Mackintosh and The Really Useful Company, Inc., The Phantom of the Opera is the most successful stage musical of all time, with worldwide ticket sales exceeding $3.2 billion. The Broadway production opened on 26th January 1988 and went on to win seven 1988 Tony Awards, including Best Musical. It’s been seen by almost 11 million people and grossed over $585 million, making it the highest-grossing show in Broadway history.
Based on the classic novel Le Fantôme de L’Opéra by Gaston Leroux, The Phantom of the Opera tells the story of a masked figure who lurks beneath the catacombs of the Paris Opera House, exercising a reign of terror over all who inhabit it. He falls madly in love with an innocent young soprano, Christine, and devotes himself to creating a new star by nurturing her extraordinary talents and by employing all of the devious methods at his command.
The current cast of Phantom also stars Sandra Joseph as Christine and Tim Martin Gleason as Raoul and co-stars Jeff Keller (Firmin), George Lee Andrews (André), Anne Runolfsson (Carlotta), Marilyn Caskey (Madame Giry), Larry Wayne Morbitt (Piangi) and Kara Klein (Meg Giry). At certain performances, Rebecca Pitcher plays Christine.
The Phantom of the Opera has music by Andrew Lloyd Webber and is directed by Harold Prince. Lyrics are by Charles Hart (with additional lyrics by Richard Stilgoe) and the book is by Richard Stilgoe and Andrew Lloyd Webber. The Phantom of the Opera has production design by the late Maria Bjornson, lighting by Andrew Bridge and sound by Martin Levan. Musical staging and choreography is by Gillian Lynne. Orchestrations are by David Cullen and Andrew Lloyd Webber.
The performance schedule for The Phantom of the Opera is Monday and Wednesday through Saturday evenings at 8pm and Tuesday evenings at 7pm with matinees Wednesday and Saturday at 2pm. For tickets, call Tele-charge at (212) 239-6200, visitor visit The Majestic Theatre box office (247 West 44th Street).
The 11 Broadway Phantoms:
Phantom – First Broadway Performance
Michael Crawford – 9th January 1988
Timothy Nolen – 10th October 1988
Cris Groenendaal – 20th March 1989
Steve Barton – 19th March 1990
Kevin Gray – 3rd December 1990
Mark Jacoby – 22nd February 1991
Marcus Lovett – 24th May 1993
Davis Gaines – 4th July 1994
Thomas James O’Leary – 11th October 1996
Hugh Panaro – 1st February 1999
Howard McGillin – 23rd August 1999
Hugh Panaro (return) – 14th April 2003
Howard McGillin (return) – 3rd October 2005
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