Friday, August 22, 2008


The process of writing, for me, involves noticing something of interest and then mulling it around in my head so that, by the time I sit down at my computer, the words flow out as complete ideas. As usual, I have many ideas floating around in my head, but for the last week I have been unable to get any of them molded into coherent ideas worthy of being put down on paper. The words and ideas tumble around in my brain, but I haven’t been able to make sense of them because my brain has been consumed! Consumed with the music from Phantom of the Opera. I wake at night and the Phantom of the Opera is there, inside my mind. I put down the very-riveting book that I’m reading and the Phantom of the Opera is there, inside my mind. I pause for a moment during a discussion with my husband and the Phantom of the Opera is there, inside my mind.

The Phantom of the Opera is my all-time favorite stage-play. I saw it twice with friends many, many years ago and then took my oldest son to see it, followed a few years later by taking my middle son and a nephew to see it. I promised my two oldest daughters that it would be their turn to see it the next time it came through Portland. Almost two years ago the announcement was made that Phantom would be playing in Portland in August of 2008. My husband bought tickets immediately. My daughters and I have been talking about and planning our night out for months. Last Saturday was, finally, that night. Without giving away too much of the story, I’d given the girls a quick rundown on the basic story line and I had prepped them for an emotionally charged evening. Well, let’s just say that the evening did not live up to what I had experienced in the past. This particular performance was, simply, not very good. The characters weren’t compelling, the enunciation of the lyrics was so poor that it was difficult to follow the storyline; there were very few moments that brought a chill to my soul. We left the theatre somewhat disappointed – me, more than the girls, because I knew from prior performances just how powerful this should have been.

Two days later my husband and our oldest daughter came home with the 2004 Phantom of the Opera DVD. I have always been hesitant to watch this movie because, just as with a book, the movie version of a story is rarely as good as the original product. However, given our disappointment over Saturday night’s stage performance and finding out that the actor playing the Phantom is a recent favorite (Gerard Butler – watch the movie P.S. I Love You for a real treat), we decided to give the movie a try. The result? I’ve been consumed with the music – the Phantom of the Opera is there, inside my mind. So, I have other blog topics rolling around in my mind, but for now, I’m having trouble getting past Phantom – maybe I need to give myself a good dose of country music.

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