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Reviews of Mike as The Phantom


Review by Nicola Waters


Mirror- He did 'insolent..' very well, very forceful. Lovely the way he suddenly went much softer for 'flattering...'. Mike had his cloak completely wrapped around him initially, like on Tuesday, all you could see were his head and the cloak. His eyes moved to the left a bit and then moved back to her. On the 2nd 'I am...' he slowly unfurled the cloak, very gracefully.

POTO- Swooped the cloak up in a very neat fashion as he left the ramp. His 'sing for me' s are great, very intense. After taking the cloak off, he stroked his body before lifting his hands to smooth his hair down. Ends by saying 'sing!....sing my angel of music.'

He sang 'I have...' gazing at her in the most wonderful way, although alas he started MOTN looking away from her initially. On 'abandon' he moved his right hand out to the right, and very gracefully curled it inwards again. As he left the organ, his right hand was still just to the right of it. He was very emphatic on 'unfurls..'- lifted his heads well above his head, moving his arms outward and unfurling his fingers. Had a wonderful expression on his face as he left the organ before 'caress.' Didn't do anything on 'caress', but on 'feel' he moved his hands down the top of his legs (and toward the centre, grin) in a rather adorable fashion. Really flung himself onto the portcullis, and then moved his left arm out along it, gracefully moved it out from his side. C just about touched his mask before moving away. He caressed a little way up the centre her body as he sang 'savour...'. It's very interesting the way he takes the cover off the mirror- takes it off all in one movement- rather than sweeping it off and *then* throwing it to the side, he sweeps it off and gets rid of it all in one go. *very* forcefully. Caught her beautifully, and held the last note perfectly. (How lovely, after a year of Glyn's unsuccessful attempts).

After he'd played the organ, he stopped, and took a deep breath, which was lovely. Wrote on the music sheets very carefully with a sweet expression, leant write over to start at the top left with his right hand. As the monkey was playing, he was conducting his music in a very adorable fashion, then took another deep breath. Gave a very adorable cry when she ripped the mask off, and said 'damn *you*..' very forcefully. Did 'now you cannot' standing over her. Didn't fling himself around quite as much this time as he moved to the organ. Sat up on 'heaven..', lifted one shaking arm up, then seemed overcome and leaned back down again. His voice seemed to be breaking on 'this...'. As he said 'oh Christine..' his voice gave and he started to cry, and when he turned could hear him crying *very* clearly in the sweetest fashion. When he came out onto the proscenium for the first time, he again went right out to the end, which is so lovely because you then get such a clear view of him.

Angel- the way he sang 'now..' was so sweet, he held the note for quite a long term and sounded incredibly sad. his voice broke on 'betrayed'. After 'sing..' he said 'Christine...Christine.' When he put he hands out along the metal again, hit it so hard could hear the contact clearly. As he put his hands to his ears he was making little anguished sounds, then he gradually started to sound more angry, and made little furious sounds. The trapdoor didn't work for Red Death. Mike had wrapped his arms around himself, but nothing happened. The lead male dancer covered him with his cloak and shielded him as he left the stage.

Mausoleum- he came out *with* the violin, and left the cross in a very graceful fashion. Walked down the front of the steps forwards and to the left, and never took his eyes off her. Put his right leg up on one step to sing to her. His 'I am your angel...'is *wonderful*. 'spirited' was great, so sarcastic! 'such *spir*ited words!'

PONR- interesting the way he holds the cup. Keeps the top 3 fingers of his left hand together, and puts the small finger of his right hand between them. Catches her to him *after* 'when', somes Phantoms do that on 'when'. Turned quite late on the bench again, and was facing to his left. His hands were palm upwards on his knees, and as she got nearer his fingers started to move. After catching her hands her moved her left hand down his body then down his left leg, and finally stroked his right hand down his right leg. After she took his head off he looked totally shocked, and as he back off a little could see his lip trembling. When he pulled away he was moving his hands together in this anxious fashion. His hands were trembling as he took the ring off. When C ripped his mask off he cried out, pulled away then cried....*no*..'. His first 'why' in the boat was very sweet, very soft, and the 2nd one was more forceful, still beautiful.

Final Lair- Pushed her away from him with his right arm when they came on. Moved very close to her as he sang '...blood'. Then his expression totally changed, and as he sang 'has also..' it was as thought this idea had suddenly occurred to him, and he moved even closer to her, yearning expression. When she turned away, he looked utterly miserable and drew right back. 'This face' was quite forceful, then his voice went very soft for 'which poisons' and he came up a little behind her, and sort of framed her outline with his hands. Turned away, and on 'this face..' touched the right hand side of his face gently then quickly drew his hand away. 'Face your fate' very emphatic, then moved to her and bent toward her for 'before your eyes.' As she was singing, he was looking very intently at her and he suddnely seemed to realise that she was standing before him dressed as his bride- his expression changed, could see the reaction on his face as he looked at her, and he stook back a little and gazed at her in this enraptured fashion. Suddnely seemed to realis something was missing, turned, picked up the flowers and put them into her hands, then stood and gazed at her again. *sweet*. On 'wait..' he reached out and touched her before moving to R. Didn't bow on 'unparalled', instead made this derisive gesture to R, flinging his arms toward him. Flung the mannequin down harder than I've *ever* seen it flung down before :) Looked incredibly gorgeous on the throne, but I somehow managed to exercise an incredible amount of self-restraint and didn't throw myself over the orchestra pit onto him :) As R saif 'I love her..' Mike turned and made a forceful, dismissive gesture towards R and C before turning away. Put his hand on his right knee, and on 'the world showed..' he turned back to R and getsured towards himself, putting his hand to his chest. Did the movement again on 'raise up your hands...', sang that line deeper this time. Held C very close to him for 'start', her body was right up to his. (yours truly was naturally dying of envy). On 'this is the choice..' he went over to R and grabbed him. When he went to the organ, he was initially looking angry, but as she sang 'tears' he looked up in this sweet hopeful fashion, his expression softening. On 'hate' he said '', shook his head and reached out to her. Then tried to gather himself a bit before leaving the organ. Held C for 'so do you..' let her go for 'or do you send him..'. C then tried to touch him, and he pulled away saying 'no...' then cried '*no*.' again as he reached the throne. wonderful. Sat down before 'past the...'. was looking terrible upset, then tried to gather himself a bit and said 'you try my *patience*.' Looked terrible upset as he was standing waiting. When C kissed him, his arms started to shake and he put them around him tentatively, as though he was utterly unsure how to embrace someone. When she held him to her he held her too very nervously, then his arms dropped to his sides. His arms lifted again as she kissed him again, and he just about managed to put them around her, arms still very tense and shaking. Could hear his breathing when he backed off, looked utterly bewildered. Seemed to really hit him as her neared the organ, touched his right hand to his face. When he went over to R, he seemed to pause and consider for a moment, staring at C, before cutting R down. Went over to the organ for 'take her...','forget *me*...' moved to the throne for 'go now..'- every word sounded totally anguished. He actually sat down in the throne (looked exhausted) for 'secrets'. I've never seen anyone do that before, wonderful!!! Left the throne for 'go..go now..'. On 'leave me..' his voice broke, he came back toward the monkey, and as he fell he gave this tremendous, anguished sob. Then started to sob quietly as he lay near the monkey, and made a little 'oh..' on a sob as he sat up when the monkey started to play. Began to sing 'masquerade..', and reached out to the monkey, voice started to break and he spoke 'never...find *you*..', covered the monkey's face, then turned a bit to his left and cried. Realised she was there, stood and turned towards her looking so happy and reached out to her. Saw her hold the ring out, took it and sang 'Christine..I' so beautifully, took her hand. He held onto her hand, when she pulled her hand away he tried to keep hold of it, and as her hand came away he whispered '' crying, then cried '*no..*' sounding more and more distressed..'*Christine*....I Love you' his voice breaking on 'love'. Turned back, sobbing, said 'Christine..', sobbed even more uncontrollably, and kept whispering her name. Made this anguishd sound when he saw the veil, and held it to him stretched along his body as he knelt, caressing it as if it were her. he was sobbing in the most heart-wrenching fashion. As they were singing he turned to look toward Christine, and reached out to her, which was utterly adorable, never seen a Phantom do that before. Sang 'over' very forcefully, and after 'night' he suddendly seemed to realise he was still holding the veil, and dropped it as though it was distressing him. He's an utterly *incredible*, *adorable*, *gorgeous* Phantom, and yours truly is seeing him again in 5 days :))))))))

Meredith is harmless enough, nice voice, but she does look perpetually startled about something. Gardar is still a bit wooden, but then has only been doing it for 6 days and he's never been in a West End show before. He smiled at me in a very sweet fashion during the curtain call- I'd stood up for Mike, and seeing as I was in the centre of the front row I was (grin) rather obvious.

Another Review by Nicola

I've put this review up so you could see how Mike's perfomance as the Phantom has changed.
Dean McRae was playing Raoul, only seen him once before, and Colleen Taylor
was playing Christine.

MOTN: Took a little emotional breath, just before he leant down to the
organ and sang ' music.' Touched his mask slowly as he left the organ,
very nice gesture.

He gets a truly lovely expression in his eyes- very intense expression in
them, and he hardly ever takes his eyes off her.

When he put her down on the bed, he lowered her left hand slowly- and, at
the last second, moved the cushion under her hand again!! This is just *so*
sweet. He didn't kneel this time, but bent very low over her, sort of
glided his right hand over her, barely touching. His left hand was also on
the cloak, just about touching it.

When C took his mask off, he cried out in such a fashion that the cry was
almost crying.
On '...but *Christine*' he sounded like he was about to burst into tears.

He leant towards her in an intense fashion, when he said 'carcass', and
then instantly leant back, held his left hand out to her, in a sort of
apologetic fashion (also hear it in the tone of voice, when he started
After a little while, lying near her, he gasped, and dragged his left hand
back over his head. When he'd sat upright, facing the portcullis, gave a
little sob.
He leant towards her with a very tender expression, after he'd put his mask
out; held his left hand out to her, then stopped himself at the last minute.

After the chandelier had actually landed, he laughed again! Like the way
he's started doing that :)

PONR: When C took his hood off, he gave a little cry as he turned away. On
'solitude' he made a little nervous sound. Cried out in horror when she
took his mask off, then again, a more angry sound the 2nd time.

Final Lair: Mike was stroking the veil as he walked towards C; looked
*very* nervous, pensive expression on his face.
Got very intense as he said 'flesh', reached out to her in a very yearning
fashion- when she turned away, his expression changed totally, looked so
upset and backed off.

Sang 'which poisons our love..' very softly and quietly, reached out to her
very nervously, then put his right hand back in the veil, rubbed both hands
in the veil.

After he stood back to gaze at her, wearing the veil, was a little pause
before he decided to go to her and rearrange the veil out around her.

When R said 'I love her', Mike made an exasperated sound, turned away.
Very sweet expression as he held her to him for 'start'; very intense, as
he spoke, but also, had a kind of 'thrilled' expression to have her so close.

When C sang 'cold' he was still straightening himself a little from leaning
down to his music; expression went all miserable on 'hate', and after a
little while he cried 'no!' clearly, quickly.

Just after 'grave', he gazed at her, then went toward her; seemed angry,
then stopped himself when he was close to her, made a sound.

During the first kiss, his arms moved a lot, back and forth, his right arm
sort of moved the back of his tailcoat up a bit at one point. And when C
moved to kiss him again, his eyes widened in the sweetest fashion! Touched
the back of his tailcoat again as she kissed him again.

As he walked away, he gave a little astonished gasp, sort of like 'oh'
(that's not the right description, I wish I could describe voice
properly!), deep in his throat, then a quiet whimper as he neared the organ.

He fell on his left side near the monkey, and cried very quietly; made a
little sound when the monkey began to play.
On '...parade..masquerade' he put his hands together as if he were copying
the monkey. Sweet. 'world will never...' turned to his left, leant down
'find you' (very deep), put his hand to his face.

So happy to see C, sort of held his arms apart a little to welcome her.
Looked so miserable when he saw the ring, dipped his head as he took her
hand. Lifted his head to look at her, after a little moment. 'Christine..I
love.. you', voice really shaking on 'you'.
Colleen reached out to hold his hand with her other hand, which was lovely.

He gazed at her, a little 'no...' in his throat as she started to leave,
then '*no*' crying. Then 'Christine I love you.... I love you.'

He turned around, suddenly saw the veil and had the *sweetest*, most tender
and heartbroken expression as he went to it. He knelt, picked up the veil
in both hands 'I love you..', sobbed into it; sort of wrenching sobs, most
heartrending sobs I've ever heard.

When C and R started to finish their line, he looked up, started to rise,
and looked all panicked, said 'Christine...'(sounded like he was struggling
to get the words out)'I love you'- sounded so upset he could hardly speak.

Was holding the veil as he turned around; and when he saw the throne, his
eyes went even sadder.

He really is such a sweet Phantom, I've honestly never heard anyone cry in
such a heartbreaking fashion.

Dean McRae's a very energetic Raoul, in the sense that he puts a lot into
everything, lot of feeling. His and Colleen's AIAOY certainly had a lot of
effect on the audience, very well received.
Colleen's also very good, lovely voice, and liked her acting, especially in
the Final Lair.