Running since January 1988 In this classic musical - the longest running production in Broadway history - a hideously deformed man lives in the cellars of the Paris Opera and takes a stunningly beautiful soprano as a student. Winner of 7 Tony Awards, including Best Musical.
This show is a very good buy for families looking for the quintessential Broadway experience – the scenery is lavish, the lush orchestral score has a real "Broadway" feel to it, and even after all of the worldwide productions, tours, and the recent film, the original is still a great introduction to what the world of Broadway is all about.
In July 2005, the NY Times revisited the show and said: "Judging by sheer invention, emotional punch and onstage talent, the venerable blockbuster still beats out almost all of the whippersnappers currently on Broadway."
Here's a clip from the 1988 Tony Award broadcast, featuring the show's original stars, Michael Crawford and Sarah Brightman (neither of whom are currently in the Broadway production):
1988 Tony Awards: Best Musical, Best Direction of a Musical, Best Scenic Design, Best Costume Design, Best Lighting Designer, Best Actor in a Musical (Michael Crawford), Best Featured Actress in a Musical (Judy Kaye).
1988 Drama Desk Awards: Outstanding Music, Outstanding Director of a Musical, Outstanding Set Design, Outstanding Costume Design, Outstanding Lighting Design, Outstanding Orchestration, Outstanding Actor in a Musical (Michael Crawford).
1988 Outer Critics Circle Awards: Best Broadway Musical, Best Set Design, Best Costume Design, Best Lighting Design, Best Actor in a Musical (Michael Crawford).