My Phantom


Today I went to see the Phantom of the Opera. I’ve seen it five times. The last time I was with my parents and I was probably about 13 or so and I was an aspiring actress/singer… My biggest champion was my Dad, more on that at another time.

My Dad was a lover of the arts, music and musical theater and is responsible for instilling and encouraging my love of theater–a love that has brought me much joy even though my theatrical aspirations have long been abandoned. We would listen to a number of scores on our two-hour drives upstate (we had a country house in Columbia County). The primary ones were Les Miserables, Into The Woods and — of course — Phantom of the Opera. I know all of them by heart, seriously. I haven’t listened to them in a very long time though and had forgotten some of the nuances of the story (or book) and honestly had thought that this trip to Phantom was going to be more for my daughter than for me. I thought I would find it hokey… I’ve seen other shows in the decades since my last trip and wrote it off as a tourist trap (ok, I’m a jaded New Yorker… I’m copping to it).

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My First Note

Dear Dad,
I’ve had this idea for a very long time and it’s taken me some time to actually “put it into action.” I hope this is one of many Notes I send to you, but I had to send this one first…

Remember when I was in middle school and I had to decide what classical instrument to play? We went to a rehearsal of the NY Philharmonic and watched a them play Beethoven’s Ode to Joy and you pointed out to me the First Violinist and how important they were to the conductor. You wanted me to play violin and I choose clarinet because the boy I had a crush on picked clarinet and I dashed your hopes of ever being a first violinist …

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