A complete guide to all the songs in 'The Phantom of the Opera'
Learn more about the songs in The Phantom of the Opera , including "Masquerade," "All I Ask of You," "The Music of the Night", and "Think of Me."
It’s time to listen to the music of the night – otherwise known as Andrew Lloyd Webber’s soaring score for his all-conquering 1986 musical The Phantom of the Opera . Featuring lyrics by Charles Hart, and a libretto co-written by Lloyd Webber and Richard Stilgoe, it’s an epic adaptation of Gaston Leroux’s novel about a masked genius lurking in the sewers beneath the Paris Opera House in the late 19th century.
That lurker would be the Phantom: the musical mentor of young soprano Christine. She becomes the centre of a passionate love triangle, pursued both by the Phantom and by her childhood friend-turned-wealthy patron, Raoul. The show opened in the West End starring Sarah Brightman, Michael Crawford and Steve Barton, and went on to win Olivier and Tony Awards for Best Musical. Find out more about The Phantom of the Opera in London.
Phantom continues to enchant audiences: it’s the longest-running show in Broadway history, and the second-longest-running musical in the West End following Les Misérables . Part of its appeal is the sheer opulent scale, including that famous chandelier. But key to its success, too, is Lloyd Webber’s mighty operatic score. Follow us down into the Phantom’s lair (via His Majesty's Theatre ) as we guide you through the show’s indelible songs.
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“Hannibal Dress Rehearsal”
Phantom has a recurring show-within-a-show element. We open with the fictional cast rehearsing a new production, Hannibal, starring prima donna Carlotta. This scene also packs in some speedy exposition, introducing the audience to the opera house’s new owners, Firmin and Andre, and new patron, the Vicomte de Changy (also known as Raoul) — and also telling us that orphan Christine’s father was a famous violinist. It sets the template for a musical that will constantly whisk between onstage and backstage.
“Think of Me”
Carlotta storms off after a backdrop crashes down from the flies, and Christine takes over her role for that evening’s performance. “Think of Me” is her big aria, but its wistful lyrics also spur Raoul to recognise her as his childhood friend, and to wonder if she too remembers their shared past. It adds emotional heft to — and complicates — Christine’s triumph.
“Angel of Music”
Christine reveals to Meg (daughter of the ballet mistress Madame Giry) that she has a secret tutor, who she calls the Angel of Music. She believes it’s the spirit of her late father — a naïve idea encapsulated by this dreamy little number.
The Angel of Music becomes a point of reconnection for Christine and Raoul when he visits her in her dressing room and asks her out to dinner. Both remember the stories that her father used to tell them, and the song “Little Lotte” that he taught her to sing. He assumes it’s all a fantasy, whereas Christine thinks it’s actually real.
Enter the Phantom — and an angry, jealous Phantom. He’s furious that Raoul is sharing in his triumph, and lures Christine away. She meets his fury with a sweet reprise of “Angel of Music.” Finally, he reveals himself to her in her mirror and takes her away.
“The Phantom of the Opera”
The almighty title number! It’s a key duet between Christine and the Phantom as they explore their dynamic: the Phantom has embedded himself in her psyche, and he takes credit for her glorious voice, while she characterises herself as his mask. The music echoes this tussle: both beautiful and ominous, grand as the Opera House and eerie as the sewers.
“The Music of the Night”
After travelling by boat to his hidden lair, the Phantom reveals that he has selected Christine as his muse — and shows her an image in the mirror where she’s wearing a wedding dress. It’s all too much: Christine faints. That brings out the Phantom’s caring side, as he covers her with his cloak and croons this tender song. Listen to the lyrics and you’ll find a sinister juxtaposition between the seductive music and his intent, which is to seduce her with his genius and trap her in the dark with him.
“I Remember”/ “Stranger Than You Dreamt It”
Christine wakes to hear the monkey music box (the one that Raoul will see at the auction in the show’s prologue). As the Phantom sits at the organ, composing his next opus, Christine creeps up to him and removes his mask – revealing his disfigured face. The Phantom roars at her anger, then this tune softens as he admits he yearns to be loved.
“Notes”/ “Prima Donna”
Andre, Firmin and Raoul are all fretting about the mysterious disappearance of their sopranos. But the Phantom has written a series of notes, demanding Christine become the star of his new opera, not Carlotta. The owners appease a furious Carlotta, assuring her that she won’t be replaced. It’s a busy number with lots of cross-currents (and a fun piece of epistolary farce) – a nice contrast to the serious songs we’ve just heard in the sewers.
“Why Have You Brought Me Here?”
After the Phantom sabotaged the performance by reducing Carlotta’s voice to a croak, Christine drags Raoul to the rooftop and confesses all about the Phantom and his dangerous obsession with her. Raoul still thinks it was just a dream.
“All I Ask of You”
Now Raoul gets his big moment – and it’s the polar opposite to the Phantom’s “Music of the Night”. He says that daylight (not the darkness) will dry her tears, and that he will be her shelter and her light. Instead of wanting to control her, he simply asks to be a part of her life. That sentiment is matched by a sweet, gentle, sincere tune – and when Christine matches it, their romance takes flight.
“All I Ask of You (Reprise)”
Uhoh. The Phantom was spying on them and he now uses their love song with which to swear revenge. Watch out for Act Two...
“Masquerade”/ “Why So Silent?”
Phantom ’s second half opens six months later, and in grand style: with a masquerade ball. Masks are being used playfully (as exemplified by the jaunty patter sections with swift, teasing lyrics), and the general tone is jubilant: Christine and Raoul are engaged, and all is well. At least, until the Phantom gate-crashes the party. He has a new opera for them, but demands Christine star – and return to him.
“Notes”/ “Twisted Every Way”
Another knotty plotting number, but the tone is now sombre. Christine is scared that she’s become the Phantom’s prey, and Raoul entreats her to use the opera to trap the Phantom. Will she betray her mentor?
“Wishing You Were Somehow Here Again”
Her loyalties divided, Christine visits her father’s grave. After the frantic opening action, it’s a slow, shimmering number that shifts between warmth and aching melancholy. It’s also an important part of Christine reckoning with the past: in one way or another, she’s been haunted throughout the show, and (in the song’s big climax) now needs to find the strength to fight for her future.
The Phantom isn’t going away just yet. He appears to Christine in the cemetery, once again seducing her with the power of his voice and “Angel of Music” genius – until Raoul breaks the spell.
“Don Juan Triumphant”/ “The Point of No Return”
That’s the title of the Phantom’s new opera, which we now hear rehearsed by Christine, Carlotta and the chorus. The Phantom gate-crashes once again, taking on the part of Don Juan so he can sing lyrics with a double meaning to Christine: “In your mind you’ve already succumbed to me… no use resisting: abandon thought, and let the dream descend.” But are they really “past the point of no return”?
The Phantom then uses a reprise of “All I Ask of You” to propose to Christine. However, before he can finish, she unmasks him – and they discover the corpse of the actor he murdered. Game over.
“Down Once More”/ “Track Down This Murderer”
As an angry mob vows to hunt down the Phantom, he escapes to his lair with a captive Christine. Raoul follows, and the Phantom threatens to kill him unless Christine stays. Finally, Christine realises the truth: his haunted face holds no horror for her – it’s in his soul “that the true distortion lies”. She decides to show him pity and kindness, and kisses him.
That thaws the Phantom’s heart, and he releases the two of them; they depart with a final reprise of “All I Ask of You,” leaving the Phantom alone with his “Music of the Night.”
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Photo credit: The Phantom of the Opera (Photo courtesy of production)
Originally published on Mar 1, 2023 16:15
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The Phantom Of The Opera Musical Numbers
The Phantom of the Opera (Original Motion Picture Soundtrack)
Andrew Lloyd Webber's sumptuously melodic "music of the night" kicks off with a gothic synthesizer flourish for the soundtrack to Joel Schumacher's 2004 film. Starring Gerard Butler in the title role and a teenaged Emmy Rossum as Christine, The Phantom is an old-fashioned musical at heart, with sweeping romantic balladry ("All I Ask of You") and a sophisticated comedy piece ("Prima Donna"). Webber's keen pop sensibility is in full effect during Minnie Driver's credits number, "Learn to Be Lonely."
December 10, 2004 14 Songs, 1 hour, 3 minutes A Polydor Ltd. (UK) release; ℗ 2004 The Really Useful Group Ltd., under exclusive licence to Universal Music Operations Limited
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The Phantom of the Opera
This original London cast recording was the first in British musical history to enter the charts at number one.
Written by Andrew Lloyd Webber during his marriage to Sarah, The Phantom of the Opera is perhaps the musical theatre production that best showcases Sarah’s uncannily broad vocal range.
Having originated and defined the female lead role, it’s not surprising that Sarah will probably always be regarded as the quintessential Christine in this landmark musical.
Sarah premiered the role at Her Majesty’s Theatre in London on Oct 9, 1986 and at the Majestic Theatre on Jan 26, 1988 in New York.
Since then, The Phantom of the Opera has won over 50 major theatre awards. These include 7 Tony Awards (including Best Musical), 3 Olivier Awards (including Musical of the Year), 3 Outer Critic Circle Awards (including Best Musical), 7 Drama Desk Awards and an Evening Standard Award.
1. Think of Me 2. Angel of Music 3. Little Lotte…/The Mirror…(Angel of Music) 4. Phantom of the Opera 5. Music of the Night 6. I Remember…/Stranger Than You Dream It 7. Magical Lasso 8. Notes/Prima Donna 9. Poor Fool, He Makes Me Laugh 10. Why Have You Brought Me Here? Raoul, I’ve Been There 11. All I Ask of You 12. All I Ask of You (Reprise)
1. Masquerade/Why So Silent 2. Notes…/Twisted Every Way 3. Wishing You Were Somehow Here Again 4. Wandering Child…/Bravo, Monsieur… 5. Point of No Return 6. Down Once More…/Track Down This Murderer…
10 best songs in the phantom of the opera (2004).
Joel Schumacher's 2004 film The Phantom of the Opera highlights the classic songs from the timeless Broadway play by Andrew Lloyd Webber.
The Phantom of the Opera is synonymous with certain famous symbols and images: the rose with a black ribbon, the phantom's white mask, and a falling chandelier, to name a few. Besides these, and the grand spectacle of a Paris opera house, deep underground catacombs that make up the Phantom's lair, and a large mausoleum, The Phantom of the Opera is most acclaimed for its sweeping, soaring songs.
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The movie, which is based on the play by veteran Broadway artist Andrew Lloyd Webber (who also did Cats ), is a stunning extravaganza of music that's devastatingly romantic, and just plain devastating.
"I Remember/Stranger Than You Dreamt It"
After Christine Daae's introduction to the Phantom, she awakes from her faint-induced slumber to find herself in the Phantom's lair. She sings her portion "I Remember" that leads into his "Stranger Than You Dreamt It" after she peels the mask from his face in a moment of his weakness.
Christine's portion is full of an innocent curiosity and naiveté, which ultimately leads to her being hurt and scorned by the angel of music. Phantom's song is the first time viewers get a peek into the trauma of the opera ghost. Shackled to the underground labyrinth of the opera house, he refers to himself as a beast, a carcass, a monster, and believes he's in Hell, forever burning and yearning for Heaven's beauty. The instrumentals involve quick, successive sharp tones of orchestral strings. Though not present in the book, the tune in this musical (based on the 1911 French novel) is a memorable scene nonetheless.
After her mournful song in the graveyard where her father is buried, Christine sits on the steps of her father's mausoleum to say her final goodbye. As she does, the angel of music appears again, hypnotizing her again into the Phantom's presence.
In another beautiful duet between Phantom and Christine, they start to draw near one another again, Christine "yearning for his guidance" and declaring her angel of music her protector and beholder of true beauty. Phantom reminds her that he is the watchful presence that keeps her safe and cultivates her voice. The music swells and encompasses brass, winds, and strings, as she makes her way up the steps, and Phantom's voice is passionately mesmerizing.
This song, which involves the whole cast (minus Phantom) sees the opera house players as they get ready for that night's opening play. After securing Carlotta once again and demoting Christine to a mute role, the artists prepare during song in which they all reflect on the situation they're in.
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"Prima Donna" reinforces the feminine divine of Carlotta and her leading soprano, while Raoul, Meg, and Madam Giry wonder what will happen to Christine, what misfortunes will occur when the Phantoms demands aren't met, and how a nation adores their artistic pleasures at the theatre. The musical accompaniment is smooth and sailing for much of the song, then comes to a loudly triumphant end.
The whole cast joins one another on-screen once again during this spectacular music number following a new year. The opera house is holding an exorbitant masquerade party full of costumes, drinks, dancing, and physical affection. It is one big party to greet a new year -- and simultaneously celebrating 3 months of being Phantom-free.
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Perhaps the biggest of the film's operatic numbers due to the sheer size, magnitude, color, and musical force of "Masquerade", it is an unforgettable musical moment. The size of the orchestral instruments and everyone's voices add to the already magnificent and larger-than-life song where people must "guess the face" in a sea of yellows, blues, and reds, clowns, ghouls, and beasts.
"Think Of Me"
The first time the audience gets to her Christine Daae's voice is in her solo performance in "Think of Me" when she replaces Carlotta after she storms out in a huff. Daae's entrance mimics the books' as she steps in to take her place on center stage.
The song, crystal-clear in its vocalization, and the light, springy, and sprightly music behind it makes this song one of the most memorable for the central character. The sound crescendos at the end produce a monumental effect on the audience as they listen to Christine's words of asking her lover to promise to remember her when their love has faded, much like the fruits and flowers of seasons do.
"Past The Point Of No Return"
In one of Phantom and Christine's sexiest duets, this song comes towards the end of the film at a pivotal moment in their relationship that literally takes them past the point of any return.
The song is hot and heavy with passion, and love, which is reflected in its lyrics, the props and set, and even the clothes they are wearing, a clearly perfect creative aura from director Joel Schumacher . The actors' voices are on full display as the song gradually comes to its louder close, and the images of their bodies, desires, and physical prowess for one another is unmatched when they sing of the flames consuming them.
"Wishing You Were Somehow Here Again"
In another of Christine's solo acts, the soprano ventures out to the gravesite where her father is buried to finally say goodbye to him.
The song is a heartbreaking one full of anguish and despair as Christine wrestles with the end of her affair with the angel of music. She is torn between wanting to maintain the relationship but realizing she can no longer be what is necessary to make him happy. She wants to break free and "try to forgive...give me the strength to try."
"All I Ask Of You"
The dizzyingly romantic duet between Christine and Raoul is a highlight of the budding relationship between the two lovers and childhood friends.
As they stand in the snow on the rooftop of the Paris opera house and sing of their love, devotion, and commitment to one another, it becomes increasingly harder for fans not to root for the two of them. It is a genuine show of sincere love and affection that culminates in a passionate kiss and the song that defines their relationship forever.
"The Music Of The Night"
Phantom takes the spotlight in his own song that he serenades to Christine after bringing her to his lair.
The solo performance from the opera ghost is one that follows on the heels of their famous duet together and that introduces Christine to the musical genius of the angel of music and his workspace. In a way that is almost intoxicating, Phantom seduces her with his world full of night, dreams, and music. He inspires her to let her spirit soar and succumb to the rich, full existence of his world.
"The Phantom Of The Opera"
The most famous duet in the production, this song comes just as Christine is seeing and physically meeting Phantom in person for the first time.
This rock-and-roll-influenced song from the film has a rougher, sexier edge to it than what theatergoers might be used to. Christine begins the setup describing how he visited her and now he's here, while he sings back to her how they are here, once again, singing their "strange" duet. By the end, their voices and spirits become one, and audiences see the beginning of the famous love story unfurl.
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