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USA Reviews
The 'Music of the Night' Plays Again at the Kennedy Center

By Sr. Mary Ann Walsh
HERALD Columnist

Song and spectacle entertain the audience at the Kennedy Center Opera House where Andrew Lloyd Webber’s most famous musical, "The Phantom of the Opera," plays through Oct. 4.

From the first mini-explosion that opens the show to the last scene’s candlelit boat ride, the operatic musical is a modern theatre-goer’s delight...

..."Notes," the two musical numbers comprised of a series of written messages from the Phantom, is funny and handled so well that each time a piece of paper is delivered, the entire audience smiles and thinks, "What now?" Monsieur Andre (Ian Jon Bourg)and Monsieur Firmin (Donn Cook) are precisely synchronized as they quickly sing the threatening messages and stage direction from the dyspeptic Phantom.

"Phantom" became a classic the night it opened in London over a decade ago. Its popularity may be growing stronger even now, going into the third millennium, when interest in all that is eerie, such as the TV program X-Files, is on the increase. For those who want their eerie experiences wrapped in ethereal sound, "The Phantom of the Opera" provides a delightful trip into another world.

Copyright ©1997 Arlington Catholic Herald, Inc. All rights reserved


The Phantom of the Opera
Oct. 17, 1997  
Ron Bohmer (Phantom), Sandra Joseph (Christine), Lawrence Anderson (Raoul), 
Patricia Hurd (Carlotta), Donn Cook (Monsieur Firmin), Ian Jon Bourg (Monsieur André), Olga Talyn (Madam Giry), Mark Calkins (Ubaldo Piangi), Jennifer Dawn Stillings (Meg), Glenn White (Monsieur Reyer), Chip Huddleston (Buquet); Lawson Skala, Antonio Lopez, David Loring, Fredric S. Scheff, Robert Hovencamp, Dorene Falcetta, Erick Buckley, Mary Jo McConnell, Paula LoVerne, Amy Jo Arrington, Sharon Wheatley, Joan Eubank.
...In a company of outstanding performances, mention must be made of
Ian Jon Bourg  
and Donn Cook as the comically inept opera entrepreneurs, Olga Talyn as the darkly mysterious ballet mistress Madame Giry, and Jennifer Dawn Stillings as her sprightly 
dancing daughter, Meg...

February 20, 1998
The Herald
'A' For Effort Phantom players do the best they can with Andrew Lloyd Webber's weakest work. ...Other high points in the cast include the captivating Olga Talyn as Madame Giry and Ian Jon Bourg as Monsieur André. Consummate performers, these two give superior performances which have impressive complexity and offer much needed comedic respite from the whole "opera ghost" business...

March 23, 1998
By Richard Christiansen
Tribune Chief Critic
... Donn Cook and Ian Jon Bourg are the Opera  House's comic-relief owners, and Olga Talyn is the spooky ballet mistress in cahoots with the Phantom...

Theater Review
'Phantom' offers drama, suspense
Campus Times
November 13, 1998
by Araceli Esparza
Editorial Director
Several hundred "phans" of Andrew Lord Webber's "The Phantom of the Opera" have crowded the seats of the Pantages Theatre in Los Angeles during the last 11 weeks to witness the fifth-longest running musical in history...
Through "The Phantom of the Opera," Webber (also known for his work in "Cats" and "Evita") sets the scene at an opera house in which cast members are preparing for the play "Hannibal." During rehearsals, retiring house  manager Monsieur Lafévre, played by Robert Hildreth, introduces new managers Monsieur's Firmin and André (Chip Huddleston and Ian Jon Bourg) and shows them around the stage.

Phantom of the Opera
By Amy Yarnall
December 15, 1998
“The Phantom of The Opera” echoed in and out of the great walls of the Pantages Theatre in L.A. On the night of Friday, October 17th, it sent hundreds of spectators into an amazement that filled their eyes and ears. Crowds of people stood in line, waiting for the door man to lead them to what would be a spectacular event...
Ian Jon Bourg played the role of the Phantom. Bourg, who gained his fame by his work in contemporary musicals, gave such songs as “ Angel of Music”, “The Music of the Night “ and “The Phantom of the Opera” , a rich quality that only a baritone voice could achieve.
All of the passion that each performer possessed and their experience contributed to the overall effect that I think Webber and Hart wanted the public to witness. However, Bourg, Danvers, and Adams were not the only members that brought this play to life. It was the set designers, props, and extras that helped make “Phantom” remarkable.