One of the most dramatic changes to blocking in the new UK tour, before AIAoY, is Christine’s suicide attempt. After hearing the Phantom sing “Christine..” she is overcome by emotion and debates throwing herself off the roof of the opera house, with Raoul slowly bringing her back from the edge she crumples to the stage. It’s a pretty dark moment, and sucks the romance out of the scene. Making AIAOY a much more desperate plea than a sweeping romantic number.
Though more pronounced in the UK tour, I still wanna point out that Christine’s suicide attempt also has been done in the West End production of Phantom. Katie Knight Adams did it rather dramatic, and those to follow (like Rachel Barrell) has also incorporated it into the acting.
My all time favourite balance was in Copenhagen (Jan 2001). The two were far enough away from each other but you couldn’t really say Christine was near the ledge- I never read it that way) and you were not sure if Raoul heard the faint “Christine…” echo, so when she is rushing around he looks a bit exasperated and almost walks off to leave her to her strange behaviour. Then the music changes and we just saw the back of Christine, hunch over and she lets out a huge sob. And at that point Raoul sees what *she* is going through not what he has been- elaborate tricks by someone wanting to cheat people from money and have the best view!
And his heart breaks, his demeanor just crumples and his “Christine?” was so incredibly quiet and full of concern for her. It wasn’t so dark as the above but it also made a really defining moment for them to pin the song on. And gave a sense of joy at the end of the song as well as hope and then of course that lead to a pretty tense “I gave you my music” secton.
It was an amazing stage moment full stop, not just as a fan 🙂
Sigh. I am so lucky to have seen the show in countries as far apart as Denmark and New Zealand 😉 The World Tour is still too far away for me to even think of going and it was a major effort to get to Oz when it was a set down production. But I did it!