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  • Writer's pictureBroadway Beat

Theater Ghouls Protest Negative “Phantom of the Opera" Portrayal

by Devin Wallace. @thedevinwallace.

NEW YORK, New York - Hundreds of theater ghouls continued their protests outside Majestic Theater in New York City, fighting against what they called negative portrayals of theater haunters. The devilish specters emerged from their reserved balcony seats in derelict opera houses two months ago for the 30th anniversary of Phantom of the Opera’s Broadway premier.

“It’s a caricature, a farce,” said Farnsworth Pendleton III, a theater ghoul from the historic Marmont Emporium in Chicago. “It’s 2019 for God sakes and we ghouls have to endure this type of hate. It’s sickening,” Pendleton III said before disappearing in a cloud of smoke.

While for decades critics and audiences have praised the songwriting, costumes, and set design, the group argues it perpetuates negative stereotypes about phantoms.

“We’re not all spooky downers,” said Bartleby DeBloom, one of many local New York phantoms who organized the protests. “I organize a Secret Santa every Christmas. We have a groupchat. But if you watch the show, you’d think all we do is scare novice prima donnas out of a lifelong vengeance based on childhood abuse. That’s a big part of it, of course, but not all.”

“It’s Phantom-face and it’s disgusting. We’re the only group of people you can do this to,” said Pendleton III.

Not all are supportive of the group’s aims. Salvatore Multari, owner of “Good Sal’s Slices,” a local pizza joint, thinks it’s better to be safe than sorry when it comes to the supernatural. “On my nonna’s name - god bless her soul - we don’t need any more friggin’ spooky so and sos, not in my neighborhood.”

Protestors chanted “Phantoms are family” and “Hugs for haunters.” The latter chant was not well received by the parents of children waiting in line for the Sunday matinee.

Plans were made to join forces with the pack of loose lions roaming Times Square in what can only be assumed is a comment on the recent advertising push for The Lion King.


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