After 35 history-making years, Andrew Lloyd Webber's The Phantom of the Opera, the longest-running show in Broadway history, offered its final "Masquerade" April 16 at the Majestic Theatre as the famed chandelier descended for its last journey at the Majestic Theatre.
The 13,981th final show was performed for an invitation-only crowd—featuring many former Phantom cast members—who were treated to a moving video montage following the performance. The video, which can be viewed above, spotlighted all of the actors who have starred in the title role—from Tony winner Michael Crawford to Ben Crawford and Laird Mackintosh (who played the final weekend of performances)—as well as the artists who portrayed Christine Daaé—from Sarah Brightman through Emilie Kouatchou.
The final Broadway performance featured Mackintosh as the Phantom, Kouatchou as Christine, John Riddle as Raoul, Nehal Joshi as Monsieur André, Craig Bennett as Monsieur Firmin, Raquel Suarez Groen as Carlotta Giudicelli, Maree Johnson as Madame Giry, Carlton Moe as Ubaldo Piangi, and Sara Esty as Meg Giry as well as Julia Udine as the Christine alternate.
The final ensemble included Giselle O. Alvarez, Polly Baird, Janinah Burnett, Xiaoxiao Cao, Kanisha Marie Feliciano, David Michael Garry, Chris Georgetti, Kelly Jeanne Grant, Satomi Hofmann, Ayaka Kamei, Ted Keegan, Kfir, Kelly Loughran, Scott Mikita, Greg Mills, Trista Moldovan, Justin Peck, Richard Poole, Lindsay Roberts, Janet Saia, Paul Adam Schaefer, Carly Blake Sebouhian, Jeremy Stolle, Carrington Vilmont, Jim Weitzer, Elizabeth Welch, and Erica Wong.
The Broadway staging of the London-originated show won seven 1988 Tony Awards, including Best Musical. Previews on Broadway began January 9, 1988, with an official opening January 26. The original Broadway cast featured Crawford, Brightman, Judy Kaye, and the late Steve Barton.
The Phantom of the Opera became the longest-running show in Broadway history January 9, 2006, when it surpassed the nearly 18-year run of Cats. The production’s nearly 14,000 performances were seen by 19.5 million people and grossed $1.3 billion.