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A peek behind the curtain as 'Phantom of the Opera' plays at PAC

Crews prepare a chandelier prop for the performance of "The Phantom of the Opera" Dec. 5, 2019, at the Fox Cities Performing Arts Center in Appleton.
Crews prepare a chandelier prop for the performance of "The Phantom of the Opera" Dec. 5, 2019, at the Fox Cities Performing Arts Center in Appleton. (WLUK image)

APPLETON (WLUK) -- A fresh take on an old play is coming to College Avenue.

"Being on stage is really just magical," Derrick Davis, the star of "Phantom of the Opera," said.

Davis is the man behind the mask.

"I will be playing the role of the Phantom of the Opera," he said.

The classic drama has been around for decades, but Davis hopes to bring a new take on the play.

"Any actor that steps into a role brings with them the wealth of the experiences they’ve had as a human being and of course the education they have as a performer," Davis said.

"So, techincal-wise, it's a completely new scenic design, lighting design, sound design that didn’t exist when the show originally premiered in the '80s," stage manager Lizz Bender said.

She said it’s more than what the audience sees behind the scenes that makes this production new.

"Same storyline, same music but a little bit of a more realistic human take and a little bit darker than the original," she said.

Bender added it’s the difference in acting people will see when they come to watch the play for themselves.

"It’s really cool when you get into a town like this because everyone knows what you’re doing," she said. "Not only having the show here but to the economy having cast and crew members here frequenting local businesses and stuff like that, it’s really fun."

And Davis hopes to have an impact on people's hearts.

"Being in this role, because it’s such a well-known role, it gives me the opportunity to show art to another generation and that really excites me," he said.

"Phantom of the Opera" tickets start at $50 and are on sale now.

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