March 18, 2010
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Review: Love Never Dies
With some startling scene setting and video projections, Andrew Lloyd Webber's long-awaited musical starts with plenty of wow but ends up with nothing but woe.
Apart from Bob Crowley's design, this sequel to the hit Phantom of the Opera misses on all fronts. There are some winning arias, but only in so much as they offer relief from the interminably anthemic score.
Ben Elton and Webber have written a barmy story that elicts much more emotion in the characters than it does from the audience. Set10 years on from Phantom, Love Never Dies (dubbed "Paint Never Dries" by the bloggers) has moved the story from Paris to New York's now dilapidated Coney Island.
The Phantom is now the puppeteer and ring master of the most grotesque show in town. He has paid squillions for his beloved Christine (Sierra Boggess) to sing on his stage. Will she discover who her employer is? Of course she will. Will her employer discover who her son is? Naturally.
Will the fatal attraction work its magic against Christine's wishes? You have to ask? Phantom of the Opera fans will want to see it, if only for the curiosity value.