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  • Living

Phantom dominated College Opera

Wednesday, 2nd January, 2019 11:54am

Story by David Burke
Phantom dominated College Opera

Tomas Murphy, Mary Sheridan, Daniel Lynch and Shea Fahy in costume for the College Opera.

Phantom dominated College Opera

Tomas Murphy, Mary Sheridan, Daniel Lynch and Shea Fahy in costume for the College Opera.

MURDER and obsessive love are not the usual stuff of school shows, but with a record going back 75 years, the St Jarlath’s College Amateur Operatic Society can push the envelope more than most.

Their show this year was The Phantom of the Opera and it was a truly spectacular production. This is a difficult musical from many points of view, from staging to singing, and it is worth noting that in many professional productions the lead soprano role is double cast, with singers alternating during the week.

The set captivated the audience from first viewing, and with its gold pillars and flamboyant French Empire proscenium harked back beautifully to the extravagant theatres of Paris in the 19th century.

The drama opens with an auction of old theatrical props in the early 20th century, including the damaged chandelier which, rising to the ceiling, brings the action back to the 1880s.

It was an excellent start to a show which triumphed over the considerable technical challenges it poses.

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