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The Wizards of Oz,
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This review is from: Love Never Dies [DVD] (DVD)
When Andrew Lloyd Webber announced a 'Phantom' sequel, I thought that he was a little cavalier about tinkering with the 'single biggest piece of entertainment in history'. Of course, it was his to tinker with but was it best left alone? Unfortunately, when 'Love Never Dies' hit the London stage, it got mixed reviews and a concerted campaign from 'phans' who thought that 'love should die' didn't help either. I only saw 'Love Never Dies' in preview in London - I didn't see the revised version.
The Melbourne production is, however, extremely good. The leap from the London preview version to this one is big. A lot of the improvements may have ended up later in London, but the issues with the original book have been skilfully tackled. The premise for getting Christine to sing in America; the musical and theatrical links to 'Phantom of the Opera; the ending. All of these are so much better in this production.
I always thought that Andrew Lloyd Webber's score for this production contains some of his finest work. It was such a shame that he was let down by the creative team in London. I am sure that if the Melbourne production had been the one that originally opened in London - it would still be running now to packed houses. If Charles Hart had been hired to write the lyrics from 'Day 1' and the production team, who are undoubtedly 'Wizards of Oz' had also been on board, this show would be packing them in on Broadway too by now.