I watched The Phantom of the Opera in Kennedy Center in Washington, DC. last night. It was amazing. Although I knew every bit of the story and know many of the songs by heart, still I was thrilled. The performance was great, vocals were heavenly, and the stage design was magnificent. I liked the performance more than the 2004 movie (I’ve seen the older movie too, but I was a child and don’t remember it very well.) The phantom was humanized, his flaws of character were shown more vividly, and his make up was more monstrous. In the movie, the phantom’s make-up was just a joke and he was so good looking that his bitterness could not be justified. But I could feel the phantom’s agony in last night’s performance. I hated him, I loved him, and more than anything, I associated with him. I could feel how it is to be lonesome, to be excluded, to be forced to hide, while the result of your work will be out there praised, with no credit to you. Hell I can even feel how it is to be deprived of love because of a superficial “flaw.” I’ve been a phantom myself for a long time, so I know how it feels. I just never had the courage to become a villain.

Read the Washington Post’s review of the performance here.