‘The Phantom of the Opera’ cancels its national tour due to the pandemic

The Curve Theatre, Leicester, 2020, Credit: Johan Persson

Both the uncertainty of social distancing and the delicate financial situation regional theatres are experiencing right now have forced producers to shut down the show until further notice. All the scheduled venues will not accomodate the musical, which is however intended to restart a new tour when both theatres and audiences can go back to normality.

The music of the night will surely return someday to its birthplace in London, but the lockdown consequences have already striken its sister productions. The so-called brilliant original UK and Ireland tour has been officially cancelled today, as its creators have stated it will not reopen in its scheduled destinations due to the complete shutdown of British theatre by the Government.

This new version, inspired by Harold Prince and Maria Björnson’s original concept, only managed to be played in The Curve Theatre (Leicester) at the beginning of March. The upcoming cities included Manchester and Dublin, which had already been suspended, followed by Birmingham, Edinburgh, Sunderland, Cardiff, Plymouth, Southampton and Bradford. As producers have claimed, “the great uncertainty around the duration of social distancing requirements and the perilous financial situation in which many regional theatres find themselves have conspired to make re-routing an entire major tour like Phantom impossible for some time as so many existing tours are needing to reschedule”.

The Curve Theatre, Leicester, 2020, Credit: Johan Persson

This is not, however, a complete farewell, since the creative team is certain to bring back the show when both theatre and audiences can go back to normality. “Whilst it is heart breaking for us as producers as well as for our wonderful cast, orchestra and crew who had all worked so hard to create this truly spectacular but tragically short-lived reinvented staging of the original production, we are determined that the disappearance of the Phantom from the British regional stage will not be forever and that when theatre is back thrilling audiences  again the “Music of the Night” will soar once more from the orchestra pit”.

Ticket holders will be contacted directly by their venue/point of sale in due course.

By Guillermo Názara

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