Antonia Banderas helps bring the fire to this unbelievably sultry Phantom of the Opera duet
Even if you aren’t a fan of musical theater, you likely know the name Andrew Lloyd Webber.
He’s composed over 20 musicals from Cats to Jesus Christ Superstar.
But his most famous piece is arguably The Phantom of the Opera, which debuted in London in 1986.
It’s based on Gaston Leroux’s 1910 French novel about a mysterious man who lives beneath the Paris Opera House and becomes obsessed with a young and beautiful ballerina/opera singer, Christina Daaé. He tries to position her as the star of the company in place of their current prima donna.
Webber wrote the role of Christine for his wife at the time, Sarah Brightman, who appeared in both London’s West end premiere as well as the original Broadway cast.
In fact, Webber refused to let the show go on in the U.S. unless his wife reprised her role.
So it’s not a big surprise that in 1998 when a musical gala was held in Webber’s honor on the occasion of his 50th birthday, Brightman donned her costume once more for the show’s famous duet, also titled “The Phantom of the Opera.” Then again, they had already been divorced for years!
While some might be surprised to see Hollywood star Antonio Banderas sing alongside her as The Phantom, he had already starred in the 1996 screen version of another famous Andrew Lloyd Webber musical, Evita (alongside Madonna).
Despite being more than 20 years old, the performance was recently uploaded again onto YouTube in May of 2020 where it has already been viewed another 3.4 million+ times.
While it begins with the masked Phantom playing the overture on the organ, the duet itself is simply both singers dressed in their black-tie finest.
The crowd roars as Brightman emerges for the opening solo.
She’s all smiles despite the context of the song being more than a bit creepy.
After descending the steps of the elaborate set, she turns to face the Phantom, who is still playing the organ.
Then she turns to face the crowd and delights the audience with her unique soprano as Banderas slowly comes out behind her.
His approach is a bit ominous, but that’s obsessive love for you!
She sings of his appearance in her dreams and he follows up with a reminder that his power over her is growing stronger.
In the musical, Christine has no ambition to usurp the role of the prima donna, Carlotta, but it’s The Phantom that makes it all happen by haunting the opera house and wounding cast members through a series of mysterious accidents.
For anyone who doubted Banderas vocal chops, it’s worth a listen because he really does knock it out of the ballpark.
Everyone has their favorite singer for these roles, but it’s hard to deny his talent.
As they sing of becoming one – his spirit and her voice – The Phantom strolls around Christine as she tries to fight his power.
But, in the end, he’s giving her everything she ever wanted.
It’s a song of ambition as well as obsession.
Commenters were split on whether or not Banderas is right for the role, but that’s something you’ll have to decide for yourself.
He doesn’t have the booming voice of someone like Colm Wilkinson, who played the character in Toronto, but that sultry Spanish accent gives this Phantom a unique touch.
Be sure to scroll down below to see the popular performance.
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Source : https://ronproject.com/