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In This Labyrinth: Getting to the Heart of The Phantom Of The Opera

In This Labyrinth: Getting to the Heart of The Phantom Of The Opera

By Sarah Erik Sackville-McLauchlan
This podcast explores all the many levels on which Phantom is so rich, meaningful and generative. Of course I talk a lot about the #BrilliantOriginal Andrew Lloyd Webber stage-musical! But I also discuss other versions of the story, as well as Phanfic and the experience of Phandom.
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Highlights From My Zine Launch!
In this episode, I share highlights from the launch of my zine In One Combined.  Several fabulous volunteers read excerpts from the first issue at the event, and they were awesome enough to grant permission for their readings to be recorded and shared here on the show!  So enjoy a taste of the zine, and also the story of how I first became a Phantom Phan!
50:30
September 13, 2021
Welcome to the Reboot!
Welcome to a reboot of the show at last! In this first episode back, I share with listeners some of the new POTO-related projects I’ve been working on while the podcast has been on hiatus - my dissertation, my new zine In One Combined, my new YouTube channel Spirit And Voice, and of course the new Phantom Of The Future sub-series of this very show! I also say some words about the reboot of the London production which recently re/opened. Oh, and sorry for the introjections from my screen-reader! LOL Oops, didn’t realize that Zoom would record the computer voice if I left “original sound” on. Won’t do that next time! Just didn’t have the spoons to go back and either re-record the episode entirely or try to pick those out of the recording. Support In This Labyrinth: Justice From the Heart of The Phantom Of The OperaLinks:My Lulu Press author page — Where you can purchase my zine in both etext and hard-copy versions.My Zine Launch! — Where you can purchase tickets to the launch event for my zine!Spirit And Voice — My new YouTube channel where I share my music, and where I also share my spirituality and talk about the role that POTO plays in it.The 2030 Archive — The project that inspired me to start the Phantom Of The Future subseries of this podcast.Phantom Of The Future Episode 1 — Episode 1 of the Phantom Of The Future subseries of this podcast as seen over on the 2030 Archive site.
55:11
August 08, 2021
Phantom Of The Future part 1 - The Story At The Heart Of The City
The year is 2030. Phantom has been revived in Toronto, but not like before. As the city is transforming toward justice and sustainability, so, too, the production leads the way by being produced justly and non-extractively. The story, long gone, has returned to the heart of the city. This first episode of the Phantom Of The Future was inspired by and is my submission to The 2030 Archive, a project developed by the People’s Climate Movement of Toronto/GTA. The Archive seeks to use the arts to collectively imagine the city and world we want, and let that imagining inspire us to take action to bring that future into being. And of course, I want Phantom to be a part of that future and believe it has valuable contributions to make! You can check out the 2030 Archive and perhaps make your own submission at https://2030archive.org Support In This Labyrinth: Justice From the Heart of The Phantom Of The Opera
06:32
March 29, 2021
Phantom of the Underworlds: Erik as Lord of Sex and Death
In this (LOL very much belated - Oops) Halloween/Samhain episode, I explore some of Phantom’s mythological roots. In particular, I explore some of our Erik’s connections to/resonances with deities of the underworld, death and passion! Oh, and apologies for the issues with the sound-quality. Tech weirdness!Support In This Labyrinth: Justice From the Heart of The Phantom Of The OperaLinks:Hades: Greek God of the UnderworldPluto: Roman God of Death and the UnderworldBaron Samedi — Lord of sex and death in the Haitian Vodou tradition.Haitian Vodou — More info on the religion of Vodou as practiced in the Haitian tradition.Matchmaker II: Perfect Pitch — The Phanfic where I saw the resonances between Leroux Erik and Baron Samedi explored.
01:07:17
November 28, 2020
At The Intersection of Trauma and Politics: My Review of the Phanfic Shadow Government/Shadows Over Eden
In this episode, I discuss the brilliant Phanfic Shadow Government/Shadows Over Eden by Quiet2885. I discuss how it explores the intersection of trauma and politics in a way I haven’t seen done elsewhere in Phanfiction. And I discuss some of the reasons why I find I prefer the original online Phic to the published version, at least on first reading of the Kindle ebook.Support In This Labyrinth: Justice From the Heart of The Phantom Of The OperaLinks:Shadow Government — The original Fanfiction.net version of this Phanfic, which I mainly discussed in the episode.Shadows Over Eden: A Phantom Of The Opera Inspired Tale — The published version, available in both paperback and on Kindle.
57:10
October 17, 2020
Music Of Quarantine/Quarantine Of The Opera: My Interview With Melissa Duijvestijn
In this episode I interview Dutch Phan Melissa Duijvestijn. We talk about some of her experiences as an Autistic and Visually Impaired Phan, and also about the very cool POTO role-play and recording groups she’s involved in! #ManderleyAgain #QuarantineOfTheOpera #MusicOfQuarantine Plus, bonus, she sings and reads an excerpt from one of the role-plays!Special Guest: Melissa Duijvestijn.Support In This Labyrinth: Justice From the Heart of The Phantom Of The OperaLinks:Final Lair featuring Melissa, Phoenix, and another friend!Wandering Child/Bravo Monsieur featuring Melissa, Phoenix, and another friend.All I Ask Of You featuring Melissa as ChristineThe Title Song from #MusicOfQuarantine featuring Melissa's friend Phoenix.Why Have You Brought Us Here, also from #MusicOfQuarantine.
01:54:33
August 29, 2020
PSA: #SaveTheBrilliantOriginal!
PSA #SaveTheBrilliantOriginal #PhantomoftheOpera! As folks may know, the London and Broadway flagship productions have been closed due to #COVID19 (read more about it on the podcast blog). So now, we need to make sure that, when they reopen, Hal Prince’s, Gillian Lynn’s and Maria Bjornson’s original vision is preserved! You can sign and share the petitions https://www.change.org/p/cameron-mackintosh-save-the-brilliant-original-phantom-of-the-opera?fbclid=IwAR3P7J_BdCaByzAps3_Ofh4TvbpEOJK3W0ycEDNLxkVUnfDEgCSd6xsFh88 and https://www.change.org/p/cameron-mackintosh-save-phantom-london?fbclid=IwAR0WRO06G32BepAvz5oRaRiCqNdwmyEXKOF9QhVeglPF9B36DLGVnvJH87A or contact Cameron Mackintosh @CamMackLtd at https://www.cameronmackintosh.com/contact or @OfficialALW to make your voices heard!Support In This Labyrinth: Justice From the Heart of The Phantom Of The OperaLinks:Petition to Cameron Mackintosh - Save The Brilliant Original!A second petition to Cameron Mackintosh - Save Phantom In LondonContact info to send letters and emails to Cameron Mackintosh
05:20
August 07, 2020
Review of Leroux Sequel Lazare by K. E. Torwood
In this twentieth episode - Wow!, I review and discuss the awesome Queer sequel to the Leroux novel - Lazare: Gaston Leroux’s Continued Investigation Concerning The Phantom Of The Opera - by K. E. Torwood. I talk about how this book is not only masterfully written, but awesomely historical and intersectional as well! Check it and the author out at @KETorwood and https://ketorwood.com.Support In This Labyrinth: Justice From the Heart of The Phantom Of The OperaLinks:Author K. E. Torwood's website! — K. E. Torwood is an author of speculative fiction. She lives near Kansas City with her family, where she enjoys attending festivals and conventions, playing open-world video games, and curling up on the sofa to read on cold winter days.
48:19
July 23, 2020
Do I Become His Prey: POTO, Violence And The Spirit of Transformative Justice
Content warning. This episode weighs in on on-going discussions of whether or not Phantom condones, glorifies or romanticizes violence, especially gendered violence. I argue that it doesn’t! And I discuss how, instead, Phantom addresses certain realities of trauma and makes a powerful case for transformative rather than punitive justice.Support In This Labyrinth: Justice From the Heart of The Phantom Of The OperaLinks:Overview of Transformative Justice by Mia Mingus — This was written for a transformative justice (TJ) intervention I led and I’m sharing it here for others to use in their work. It was meant to be a brief description for those who are not as familiar with the framework and orientation of TJ and do not have the time or capacity to read a large, long document. It is not a history of TJ, nor a complete naming of every part of TJ, or even a thorough fleshing out of all that is named here. It is an introductory description of work that can be hard to describe. It is meant to be a starting point, not an end-point. I hope it may be useful for some of you.An article on Transformative Justice from Teen Vogue.A TJ overview from the California Coalition Against Sexual Assault.An excellent in-depth analysis of TJ from the group Generation Five.
57:35
June 02, 2020
Review: Phantom's French Language Debut!
In this first episode of 2020 - Wow! - I review the French language in-concert production of the Lloyd Webber Phantom that ran from January 8th to 26th 2020 in Montreal, Canada. I had the sheer privilege of going twice, and really loved it both times! Although, I also found myself having some friendly critiques. So needless to say, I have a lot to say about this production!Support In This Labyrinth: Justice From the Heart of The Phantom Of The Opera
55:50
February 28, 2020
When All Is Lost: Environmental Justice In A POTO Phanfic
In this episode, in honour of COP25 (the climate negotiations that just took place at the UN) and the students striking for climate justice, I discuss the amazing Phanfic When All Is Lost by Quiet2885. I talk about what environmental justice is, and explore how it’s thoroughly woven into the plot and characters of this epic Phanfiction thriller! https://www.fanfiction.net/s/2942105/1/When-All-is-Lost https://www.fanfiction.net/u/731205/Quiet2885Support In This Labyrinth: Justice From the Heart of The Phantom Of The OperaLinks:Read When All Is Lost!Wikipedia article on Environmental Justice. — Note: you'll need to scroll down a considerable way to get to the actual start of the article, but there's lots of good, solid info there!
56:39
December 18, 2019
This The Phantom's Opera: The Magic of Haunting In POTO
Happy belated Halloween/Samhain everyone!! In this slightly belated (Oops, sorry about that) Halloween/Samhain episode, I talk about haunting in POTO! I explore what it means when the haunting isn’t by the ghost or spirit of a deceased victim of injustice, but a living, breathing human-being. I also give a shout-out to my newest Patreon supporter! :-) Thanks hugely for your contribution!! http://www.patreon.com/phantomfemmeSupport In This Labyrinth: Justice From the Heart of The Phantom Of The Opera
43:56
November 12, 2019
Denied Me and Betrayed Me: Thoughts On the Lawrence Connor Production
Wow!! This is the first episode of the second year of the podcast!! Is that not cool? Anyway, in this episode, I discuss the recent U.K. and U.S./Canada touring productions of the ALW Phantom directed by Lawrence Connor. I discuss some of the changes he’s made from the original, and why some of those changes are down-right problematic! And on that note, content warning for mild references to kink and to violence against women.Support In This Labyrinth: Justice From the Heart of The Phantom Of The Opera
01:02:31
September 05, 2019
Tribute to Hal Prince #RIPHalPrince
A tribute to Phantom’s legendary director Hal Prince, who sadly passed away on July 31 2019 at the age of 91 after a truly awesome and ground-breaking career that spanned nearly seven decades, winning him 21 Tony awards and transforming the modern musical stage! The whole music-theatre world, and especially the entire Phantom family, mourns this loss! #RIP #HalPrince #TheBrilliantOriginal #PhantomoftheOperaSupport In This Labyrinth: Justice From the Heart of The Phantom Of The Opera
05:02
August 29, 2019
RIP Kevin Jackson!
Sharing some very sad news. Kevin Jackson, co-founder and co-organizer of the Toronto Disability Pride March @TDPM, has recently passed away very suddenly. RIP Kevin, and huge condolences to all the friends, family and colleagues he leaves behind, especially to his fiancee! Also, his fiancee is raising funds to cover the cost of his burial and celebration-of-life. So if folks can contribute, that would be a wonderful way to show support and solidarity to her at this really sad and difficult time! You can donate at https://fundrazr.com/e1XIM6?ref=ab_18EqWJTutyC18EqWJTutyCSupport In This Labyrinth: Justice From the Heart of The Phantom Of The Opera
02:29
July 27, 2019
Journey to a Strange New World: Queer/Crip Desire in the ALW Phantom
In this episode, which marks the 1-year #podiversary of the show - Wow!!, I celebrate both that and #Pride2019 by exploring how the ALW stage-musical of Phantom actually contains a lot of Queer Crip sexuality and desire! I also run a little non-competitive contest for folks to win a poster-version of the podcast artwork, just to do something a bit special for the occasion. Happy 1-year podiversary everyone! Thanks for listening and making the show awesome this past year, and I can’t wait to see what year 2 brings!!Support In This Labyrinth: Justice From the Heart of The Phantom Of The Opera
56:49
July 26, 2019
The Angel's Flight: A Review of The Angels of Music Series Book 2 by Louise Anne Bateman!
In this rather overdue episode (Oops, sorry about that), I finally review The Angel’s Flight by Louise Anne Bateman - the sequel to The Angel’s Shadow and second book in her Angels of Music series. In particular, I review the really superb full-cast dramatized audiobook of the novel! Btw, correction, you can find the info on where to get Bateman’s first book in the show-notes and blog-post for episode 9, not 10. Sorry about that! And you can, of course, find The Angel’s Flight in print, ebook and audiobook formats at any of the following: https://www.amazon.com/Angels-Flight-novel-Phantom-Opera/dp/1729545076 or https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B07NYBR1H6/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1550951092&sr=8-2&keywords=Louise+Anne+Bateman or https://www.amazon.com/Angels-Flight-Novel-Phantom-Opera/dp/B07NW4WNWJ/ref=tmm_aud_swatch_0?_encoding=UTF8&qid=&sr= to enjoy!Support In This Labyrinth: Justice From the Heart of The Phantom Of The Opera
42:59
June 07, 2019
What Makes You Beautiful: Interview with Bridget Liang.
In this awesome, extended episode, I interview local Toronto author and activist Bridget Liang about their recently released young-adult novel What Makes You Beautiful, all about a bunch of Queer/Trans youth and a highschool production of Phantom! We talk musicals, gender, Queerness, surviving teenagehood, and, of course, Phantom as we talk about what inspired their writing. We have a really fabulous chat, and share some ideas for Queering up Phantom, both in Phanfics we’d love to see written, and in things we’d love to see tried in stagings of the story! Bridget’s book is available at http://www.lorimer.ca/childrens/Book/3083/What-Makes-You-Beautiful.html and also at: https://www.amazon.ca/What-Makes-Beautiful-Bridget-Liang/dp/145941411X https://www.amazon.ca/What-Makes-Beautiful-Bridget-Liang-ebook/dp/B07NLDGRRM/ref=sr_1_1?keywords=What+Makes+You+Beautiful&qid=1555442351&s=digital-text&sr=1-1 :-). Plus, you can find info on their recent book-launch at: https://www.facebook.com/events/331900397679832Special Guest: Bridget Liang.Support In This Labyrinth: Justice From the Heart of The Phantom Of The Opera
01:33:51
April 26, 2019
From Christine to the Khanum: Femininity in Phantom
In this (slightly belated - LOL Oops) episode in honour of International Women’s Day, I talk about gender in Phantom. In particular, I explore what the Leroux novel, the ALW musical and the novel by Susan Kay do with femininity, and how they all present subtle but powerful critiques of the dominant division of women into “good girls/women” and “bad girls/women”. #IWD2019 #InternationalWomensDay And on an unrelated note, here’s that GoFundMe link I mentioned for my moving. Thanks in advance for any and all support! https://www.gofundme.com/gun7z-help-me-moveSupport In This Labyrinth: Justice From the Heart of The Phantom Of The Opera
46:52
April 01, 2019
Christine, I Love You! - Romantic Relationships In POTO #ValentinesDay
In this first episode of 2019, because it’s Valentine’s Day, I talk about romance in Phantom! I explore how the ALW stage-musical contrasts two distinct versions of romantic relationship, one decidedly heteronormative, and one more daring and potentially radical. P.S., Heads-up for very mild references to kink around power dynamics!Support In This Labyrinth: Justice From the Heart of The Phantom Of The Opera
32:59
February 14, 2019
Review: The Angel's Shadow by Louise Anne Bateman
In this episode, I review Louise Anne Bateman’s Phanfic novel The Angel’s Shadow, book 1 of her Angels of Music Saga. In particular, I review her superb full-cast audio-dramatization of the book! Although, I discuss aspects of the plot, characters and Ms. Bateman’s excellent writing as well. So, warning, here be spoilers! Also, content warning for mild discussion of depression, suicide, and sexuality, as these are themes in the novel. https://www.facebook.com/theangelsshadow/ https://www.amazon.com/Louise-Anne-Bateman/e/B00NCFY0DI https://www.amazon.com/Angels-Shadow-novel-Phantom-Opera/dp/1500574600 https://www.audible.com/pd/The-Angels-Shadow-A-Novel-of-The-Phantom-of-the-Opera-Audiobook/B079R6YVCP?ipRedirectOverride=true&overrideBaseCountry=true&pf_rd_p=d1efe2ab-1a95-4ea2-9236-55c5b4f66273&pf_rd_r=E0904ZJAFWM6CSBHKQ6X& Support In This Labyrinth: Justice From the Heart of The Phantom Of The Opera
46:19
December 24, 2018
Masquerade: from Poe to ALW
In this episode, I explore the famous Masquerade scenes found in both the original Leroux novel and the ALW stage-musical. I look at the original short story, Masque of the Red Death by Edgar Allan Poe, that they’re based on, and some of the ways that story has been interpreted. And then I explore how Phantom, in both Leroux and ALW, puts an inadvertent? Disability twist on it!Support In This Labyrinth: Justice From the Heart of The Phantom Of The Opera
36:56
November 21, 2018
My Power Over You Grows Stronger Yet!
I’m back finally! And in this episode, I talk about obsession. I discuss obsession in the story of Phantom a bit, but I mostly discuss the experience of being an obsessed Phan. And I try to tie it in to the history of obsession in Western culture and medicine, and think a bit about how obsessive Phanship breaks some of the rules of the very normalcy that, I’ve argued previously, Phantom itself challenges!Support In This Labyrinth: Justice From the Heart of The Phantom Of The Opera
41:37
October 31, 2018
Your Spirit And My Voice!
In this episode, I explore the critical role Phantom and becoming a Phan played in shaping my Disabled identity and politics, and how the Phantom’s spirit helped me find my voice as a Disabled person! I share this in honour of Toronto Disability Pride 2018, which is today. So happy Disability Pride everyone! #TDPM #DisabilityPride #DisabilityPride2018Support In This Labyrinth: Justice From the Heart of The Phantom Of The Opera
28:53
September 22, 2018
Our Strange Duet: The Oft Overlooked Power of the Title Song!
In this episode, I discuss the Title Song from POTO - the one actually entitled “The Phantom of the Opera”. I talk about some of the awesome things that I read going on in that song/scene, and some of the reasons why it was that song in particular that made me first fall in love with Phantom!Support In This Labyrinth: Justice From the Heart of The Phantom Of The Opera
35:60
September 04, 2018
Turning From True Beauty
In this episode, I discuss some of the things I take serious issue with in the Gerik, aka the 2004 film adaptation of the Lloyd Webber Phantom. I talk about why I find this film adaptation extremely problematic, and ultimately unfaithful to the spirit of the stage-version! Warning, here there be spoilers for both the stage-musical and the film!Support In This Labyrinth: Justice From the Heart of The Phantom Of The Opera
53:02
August 06, 2018
That Man And Mystery: POTO and the Trouble With Normal part 2, ALW
In this episode, I talk about the Andrew Lloyd Webber stage-musical of Phantom, and explore how it deals with and relates to the idea of “normal/normalcy”. Like with the discussion of the Leroux novel last time, I explore both the musical itself as a text, and some of the historical context in which it emerged.Support In This Labyrinth: Justice From the Heart of The Phantom Of The Opera
40:07
July 20, 2018
RIP Gillian Lynne.
A short tribute to Gillian Lynne, the original choreographer of the Andrew Lloyd Webber stage-musical of Phantom and of many other shows as well. She sadly passed away on Sunday July 1 2018 at the age of 92, after a career spanning 7 decades! Her loss will be felt by the music-theatre world, especially in the U.K., and by the Phantom community around the world as well.Support In This Labyrinth: Justice From the Heart of The Phantom Of The Opera
03:43
July 07, 2018
Poor, Unhappy Erik: POTO and the Trouble With Normal part 1, Leroux.
In this second episode, I talk about the original novel of Phantom by Gaston Leroux and its relationship to the concepts of “normal”/“normalcy”. I explore the historical context of the novel, and look at how that context might impact the novel’s handling of those issues. Apologies, btw, for this episode being slightly late. RL business plus technical difficulties equals delay! So thanks very much for your patience. Also, content warning for references to sexism, racism, colonial and ableist violence, and eugenics in discussion of the historical context of the Leroux novel.Support In This Labyrinth: Justice From the Heart of The Phantom Of The Opera
48:13
July 07, 2018
Whose Is The Face In The Mask?
In this very first episode, I take some time to introduce myself and the podcast. I explain something of my background and where I'm coming from in doing this show, and some of what inspired me to do it. And I cover the basics of how the podcast is going to work and some of what I hope to cover in it. So I hope you enjoy!Support In This Labyrinth: Justice From the Heart of The Phantom Of The Opera
37:31
June 12, 2018