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Wednesday, May 16, 2018

Love Never Dies


Extended Montage - Australia | Love Never Dies

My wife and I attended a performance of Love Never Dies at Keller Auditorium last night. It was a very impressive performance, full of singing, drama and elaborate stage sets. As is typical of these kind of shows there were also some dancing girls and a bit of comic relief.

It was an impressive production, but I am not sure how much it affected me. I didn't fall in love with it and I am not going to go out and buy the soundtrack, but then I am a bit of a barbarian. Beer and Rock & Roll are more my speed. However, I suspect there is a subtle effect of being immersed in an event that is the very pinnacle of what our civilization can produce. I am not quite sure what that effect might be, but it has to be better than what you get from being bombarded by commercial messages all frigging day long.

One of the props was an elaborate, ten-foot-tall horseless carriage. I had never seen anything like it, so when I got home I Googled Hammerstein steam carriage and the real thing popped right up. A similar prop makes a brief appearance in the above video around the 2:20 mark.

Trevithick Steam Carriage Replica
Supposedly the original was running around London back around 1802-1803. That was when Napoleon was still running around loose! That was a long time ago! This thing was probably the Bugatti Veyron of its time.

That got me thinking about the timeline of this whole production.

1802 - Trevithick Steam Carriage
1846–1919 - Oscar Hammerstein I (not II)
1850–1930 - Golden age of steamship travel
1881 - setting of Phantom of the Opera
1907 - setting of Love Never Dies
1909 - Phantom of the Opera novel published
1948 - Andrew Lloyd Weber born
1986 - Phantom of the Opera broadway show premier
2010 - Love Never Dies broadway show premier 

What has Hammerstein got to with any of this? I suspect an homage to a great musician. Supposedly he hires Christine to come to New York to sing, which is how this show gets started.

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