The Opera Quarterly

Controlling Voices: Singing in /Phantom/ Films

by John Snelson (2018)

The title of Gaston Leroux’s novel Le Fantôme de l’Opéra teases. At one level, it announces a story in which a ghost-like figure is connected to the institution of the Opéra. At another, it suggests not so much a ghost in the operatic machine as in the identity of opera itself, with its protagonist “the personification of Leroux’s attempts to get to the bottom of operatic enjoyment.”1 Not only does the story take place in an opera house, but the Phantom’s principal purpose is to take control of the stage through two means: repertory and casting. The Phantom’s desire to control the former is represented through his own composition, Don Juan...


Snelson, John
Controlling Voices: Singing in Phantom Films.
In: The Opera Quarterly 34,2-3 (Dec 2018), pp. 242–259.