Andrew Lloyd Webber's The Phantom of the Opera sequel musical Love Never Dies is returning to London's West End for two concert performances at Theatre Royal Drury Lane August 21 and 22. Shaun Kerrison is directing.
Leading the cast as the Phantom will be Tony nominee Norm Lewis, who previously became the first Black actor to play the title role in Broadway's The Phantom of the Opera; and Celinde Schoenmaker (Guys and Dolls) as Christine. They will be backed by the 27-piece London Musical Theatre orchestra. Further casting and creative team members are to be announced.
"My love for Andrew's Love Never Dies meant this was the quickest yes, the moment I was asked! I am honored to don the iconic Phantom mask yet again, and continue the story of a character that forever changed my life. And to perform it at the famous Theatre Royal Drury Lane? There's nothing greater. I cannot wait to be reconnected with the London audiences!," says Lewis.
The musical—featuring music by Lloyd Webber, lyrics by Glenn Slater, additional lyrics by Charles Hart, and a book by Lloyd Webber and Ben Elton with Glenn Slater and Frederick Forsyth—picks up 10 years after the events of The Phantom of the Opera, with the Phantom having escaped Paris to become an impresario in New York's Coney Island. In need of his muse, the Phantom contracts Christine Daaé to bring her family—including husband Raoul and sun Gustave—to the U.S. for a final performance, but without revealing his true identity.
Developed over two decades, Love Never Dies premiered in London's West End in 2010, in a production directed by Jack O'Brien and choreographed by Jerry Mitchell, with Broadway favorites Ramin Karimloo and Sierra Boggess creating the roles of the Phantom and Christine, respectively. The work would not prove to be the long-running hit that its predecessor was, closing 18 months later. A completely new and revised production opened in Australia in 2011, and this version was later filmed on stage and released internationally on home video. In the years since, this revised version has played around the world and toured the U.S., though the musical has still not made its way to Broadway.
The upcoming concerts are produced by Fourth Wall Live and London Musical Theatre Orchestra, with the permission of Lloyd Webber's Really Useful Group.
Interested theatregoers can sign up for a closed pre-sale that begins May 26 here.