Broadway Shockers 2022: Phantom of the Opera Announces That It's Closing on Broadway
As 2022 draws to a close, TheaterMania looks back on some of the most jaw-dropping stories of the year.
Theater is ephemeral. Everyone knows that. A show opens at an off-Broadway or regional theater and it will run for a month or two. A production opens on Broadway, and maybe it'll run for six months or a year. Every now and then, the opposite happens: a show goes on to run and run. Or, in the case of Phantom of the Opera, run and run and run and run and (insert 30 years worth of "run" here).
So it was an extreme surprise on that afternoon in September when the New York Post leaked the news that The Phantom of the Opera, Broadway's longest-running musical, would end its run at the Majestic Theatre in February 2023 after 35 years.
The reasons for the closing made sense: post-Covid, sales were light and costs were high. But immediately following the announcement, something even crazier happened: ticket demand skyrocketed. Phantom is doing so well now at the box office that the run has been extended by eight weeks. It is now expected to close on April 16, barring another extension.
Producer Cameron Mackintosh and the theater owners say yet another extension impossible, owing to planned renovations. But it's Broadway. Never say never. And even if it does end up closing in April, we're fairly certain that New York will not be without the music of the night for long, even if it is a new production that many of the show's fans find inpherior to the Hal Prince original.
In the meantime, you can join Carol Burnett in demanding that the Majestic be renamed in Prince's honor. After all, this is the last Broadway show to bear Prince's signature touch.
Or, you can see what it means to be a Phan, via our resident Phantom expert.
And if you're seeing the show in the next couple of months, scratch some of these milestones off your Phantom bucket list.