Norm Lewis joins Broadway's The Phantom of the Opera tonight in the title role at the Majestic Theatre.
Norm Lewis joins Broadway's The Phantom of the Opera tonight in the title role at the Majestic Theatre.
(© David Gordon)

Tony Award nominee Norm Lewis will make history tonight, May 12, when he becomes the first African-American actor to take on the title role in Broadway's The Phantom of the Opera at the Majestic Theatre. Lewis enters the production with his former Little Mermaid costar, Sierra Boggess, who returns to the role of Christine.

While Lewis is the first African-American actor to appear as the Phantom on Broadway, he's not the first to play the part. Robert Guillaume took over the character from original star Michael Crawford in the Los Angeles production in 1990. Lewis and Boggess succeed Hugh Panaro and Mary Michael Patterson in the central roles of Andrew Lloyd Webber and Charles Hart's record-breaking musical.

Lewis' debut in the musical makes him Broadway's 13th Phantom. Boggess has previously played Christine both on Broadway and on London's West End. She also originated the role of Christine in Love Never Dies, Andrew Lloyd Webber's sequel to the musical.

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