Recently our talented young director, Joe Meighan directed a sell out version of Les Miserables at the Garrick performed by a stunning cast of young performers. Now Joe returns with perhaps the most successful of all musicals- Andrew Lloyd Weber’s masterpiece, The Phantom of the Opera. Far beneath the majesty of the Paris opera House hides the shadowy existence of the Phantom. Shamed by his physical appearance and feared by all, the love he holds for his beautiful Christine is so strong that even her heart cannot resist. With fabulous songs, ‘Music of the Night’, ‘All I ask of You’ and ‘Masquerade’- this promises to be a night at the opera not to be missed.
- The Phantom of the Opera – CHRIS WAGSTAFF
- Christine Daa – JESSICA HEAPS
- Raoul, Vicomte de Chagny – JACOB ROBSON
- Carlotta Giudicelli – BEATRICE MARSHALL
- Monsieur Firmin – JAMES LONDON
- Monsieur Andr – DILLON BURGESS
- Madame Giry – EMILY YARWOOD
- Meg Giry – MEGAN JOHNSTONE
- Ubaldo Piangi – DANIEL UPCHURCH
- Auctioneer/Monsieur Lef’vre – RYAN CLARKE
- Joseph Buquet – AIDAN BURGESS
- Monsieur Reyer – JORDAN PENDLETON
- The Company – AIDAN BURGESS, RYAN CLARKE, AMY FAULKNER, LIZ FRASER, DOMINIC GRATTON, REBECCA HANLEY, ELISSA HEADFORD, EVIE HEADFORD, LUCY SHORT, HANNAH WILLIAMS
- The Ballet Chorus of the Opera Populaire – EMILY BARNETT, REBECCA DALE, BETHANY DONELON, MADDIE DORE, MADELEINE FAY, KATE HOWKINS
- Conductor – DANIEL MCDWYER
- Violin I (Leader):TOM ROWAN-YOUNG
- ViolinII:JO LUCAS Viola:LIAM REDMOND Cello:CARA JANES Contrabass:ALI MCMATH Harp:SOPHIE ROCKS Flute/Piccolo:CONOR PRESCOTT Flute:CLARE HOUGHTON Clarinet/Bass Clarinet:EMILY FARREN Oboe/Cor Anglais:HEREWARD READE Bassoon:BETH DAVIS TrumpetI:BEN CONWAY TrumpetII:ADAM ALBINSON Trombone:MATTHEW CORRIGAN HornI:ADAM JORDAN HornII:DAVID MAXTED Percussion:TREVOR BARTLETT KeyboardI/Accompanist:SAM DAVIS KeyboardII:RUAIRI LEONARD
- Choreographer – KIRSTY HOOPER
- Musical Director – DANIEL MCDWYER
- Assistant Musical Director – RUAIRI LEONARD
- Set Design – ROS GREENWOOD
- Lighting Design – GEOFF SCULLARD
- Sound Design – COLIN WOODS
- Sound Assistant: ARI LEVY
- Costume Design – GARRICK WARDROBE
- Scenic Artist – MANDY COOKE
- Production Carpenter – PETER JACKSON
- Properties & Furniture – JOHN NEWTON & JO MYERS
- Company Stage Manager – CLARE GRESTY
- Assistant Stage Managers – JESS FAWCETT & TONI RUTA
- Stage Crew: MARK McEWAN, STUART KILBURN, JO MYERS, ADAM HOOPER & PHIL GLEAVE
- On-stage Scenery Technician: PAUL SIMPSON
- Deputy Stage Manager – VAL WATKINSON
- Phantom Make-up Artist – LIZZY GARRETTY
- Make-up & Wigs – PATRICIA SHAW AND THE GIRLS FROM SOUTH TRAFFORD COLLEGE
Magical moment – Chris Wagstaff as the Phantom and Jessica Heaps as Christine
The last youth production I saw, opposite Shakespeare’s Globe in London, was pure torture. Altrincham Garrick’s The Phantom of the Opera, on the other hand, is pure brilliance with the cast spectacularly rising to the many challenges this fabulous musical poses. Musically, this is Lloyd Webber’s finest hour for me, with a score teeming with memorable, sumptuous showstoppers. It is difficult to perform but this vibrant young company make it look oh so easy, under the accomplished direction of Joseph Meighan from Flixton. Remember that name – on the evidence of this stunning show he is going places. Not only are the cast gifted singers, but they are equally adept when it comes to conveying the intense emotion running through this most un-orthodox of love stories. Jessica Heaps is spellbinding as Christine, with a voice so pure and powerful it is sure to bring you out in goose pimples. The scenes with the Phantom are so good, so captivating, you don’t want them to end. A powerful chemistry exists between Jessica and Chris Wagstaff, who is as sympathetic as he is scary in this difficult stage role. Jacob Robinson also excels as Raoul and a very bright future awaits all three if they embark on a career on the professional stage. It seems unfair to single out individual performances as there aren’t any weak ones and I wish I had the column inches to mention all of you, as this show represents a high water mark for youth theatre. The standard has been well and truly set.?Musical director Daniel McDwyer and choreographer Kirsty Hooper also deserve praise because they’ve also played their part in making this a truly memorable night at Altrincham Garrick. Star Rating ★★★★★
Remotegoat.com Review by Julia Taylor
‘A kaleidoscope of young talent’
NODA Review by Kevin Proctor
I have always studiously avoided this musical which I perceived to be a mawkish melodrama with a few played-to-death love songs. It wasn’t until I could no longer choose the productions I attended that I ever saw this show in its entirety and to my surprise I rather enjoyed it. Like other recent Garrick presentations, I was somewhat surprised to see this title when this season was announced – an interesting choice and another challenging one! The in-house wardrobe team lead by Mike Shaw tops all triumphs with their extravagant costuming, the Phantom himself could easily be upstaged! Not so, Chris Wagstaff oozes menacing sensuality as the man behind the mask with dramatic power and twisted pathos. The second time I’ve seen Chris take on the role following his success with the PADOS production last year, unbelievably, with this performance, he has overtaken his own winning standard. Flawless. Jessica Heaps as Christine Daae, the beauty to the beast, has many of the qualities required for the role, some of her moments were strong indeed bringing an honest likability and confident energy to her performance. At times appearing a tad ‘stagey’ for me which certainly would have worked if confined for the moments she performed the ‘shows within the show’ but I would have liked to have seen a more tranquil and naturalistic presentation for the majority. Jacob Robson as Raoul, the love struck Vicomte de Chagny was refined and elegant. The role was charmingly underplayed transforming a wet (arguably slimy) part into a potent and warm character. A class act! There are marvellous cameos by; Beatrice Marshall as the outrageous prima donna Carlotta, exposing remarkable vocals amidst her hilarious riotous trait; as so with Daniel Upchurch’s ostentatious tenor Ubaldo Piagi; Megan Johnstone as Meg offered a genuine warmth to her interpretation and the austere ballet mistress, Madame Giry brought a perturbed depth which Emily Yarwood uncovered, creating an untold interest to what can be a forgettable role. I wouldn’t have thought it but a static set does indeed work for this production, it administered more of the action to take place down stage (which is never a bad thing) while creating visual interest with its many levels and towering structure. This, working closely with the effects contributed to the overall impressive delivery. Speaking of effects, I was stunned with the vanishing act for the Phantoms final exit, terrific! It is unfortunate that if things run smoothly from the technical side, they’ll not get a mention in a critique unless they’ve done something particularly impressive, the technical aspect of a production, sadly, only get mentioned should something have gone awry. This production was still finding its feet on the night I attended as several sound q’s were missed with some mic’s being turned up too late if at all and the unlucky misplacement of the ‘tomb stone’ blocking the lighting special for the whole of ‘Wishing You Were Somehow Here Again’ which resulted in Christine performing the entire number in complete darkness. The sound from the pit was outstanding! Daniel McDwyer headed a fine orchestra indeed which complimented the whole show, rocketing it into a whole new level. The production was sensitively directed by Joseph Meighan who presented a warm salute to a show loved and favoured by so many. There are some shows open to fresh interpretation and there are others which you don?t mess with, I sensed this to be an opinion Joseph is well aware of! Congratulations to a production team (Kirsty Hooper too, for her movement) who should be immensely pleased with such a result. ‘Phantom’ will never be a show I’d get overly excited about (personal taste) though I’d challenge anyone to not enjoy or appreciate this production which has obtained more enthusiasm from me towards this show than anyone else ever could. Feeling the need to remind the reader that this is a critique for a youth production, I’ve not at all softened or censored my feelings towards this production because of its youth cast. Whether these players were adult or youth, they were marvellous all the same!
Save Money as a Friend of the Garrick
Find out how to save money, by becoming a Friend of the Garrick for as little as £20 per year.
Becoming a Friend shows your support for the theatre and can also open a whole new world for you.
If you want to get involved as a volunteer, we are always looking for new talent, any age, to work in all areas of the theatre. Whether volunteering on-stage, back-stage, front of house, in wardrobe, props, sound or lighting, or elsewhere, no experience is necessary because you will be given full training by our qualified staff.
We promise you the satisfaction of a job well done that will really surprise you, as well as promising many new friends waiting to meet you. Please pick up an Application Form from the Box Office or write to us at:
AUTUMN/WINTER SEASON 2023/24
Click on our digital brochure below. There is something for everyone!
Our box office and phonelines are open 11am-4pm and 6pm-8.30pm Monday to Friday and 9am-12pm on Saturdays.
Telephone 0161 928 1677 for box office queries, or book online.
Please keep an eye on our website for further updates and join our email mailing list to ensure that you are kept fully up to date.
We look forward to welcoming you.