Theater Interview: BRENT BARRETT (Now Appearing with The Four Phantoms in Concert)

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by Jason Mannino on March 31, 2024

in Interviews,Theater-International,Theater-Palm Springs (Coachella Valley),Tours

An extravagant celebration of the iconic music of Broadway and more, The Four Phantoms in Concert brings together — you guessed it — four actors who have played the lead role in The Phantom of the Opera. Making a stop at The McCallum Theatre in Palm Desert on April 6, The Four Phantoms are Brent Barrett, John Cudia, Franc D’Ambrosio, and Ciarán Sheehan. Each member of this extraordinary quartet has had a stunning career in music and theater. Cumulatively, they have performed the iconic title role in Andrew Lloyd Webber’s musical 6,000 times, as well as having performed some of the most iconic roles in the musical theater canon.

I had a chance to speak briefly with Mr. Barrett, who, has performed in The Four Phantoms for the past 8 years (minus a two-and-a-half-year hiatus due to COVID). Olivier-nominated for Kiss Me, Kate! with Marin Mazzie, I will never forget his terrific turn as Frank in Annie Get Your Gun with Reba McEntire. Barrett also boasts one of the longest associations with Billy Flynn in the Chicago revival on Broadway — you’ll hear him sing “All I Care About” in The Four Phantoms.

Barrett tells me that he initially declined an offer to play Raul in the Toronto opening of Phantom, opting to stay in New York after extensive touring. Fate intervened, leading him to join the world premiere of Maltby and Shire’s iconic Closer Than Ever, which remains one of the best cast albums ever recorded. In 2006, he began his Phantom association when he approached Hal Prince to audition for the title role in the Las Vegas production at The Venetian. Prince’s innovative approach to the Vegas show, aiming for freshness within the constraints of typical Vegas musical formats, appealed to Barrett. He stayed with the production for over 2 years. He also portrayed the title role in Oberhausen, Germany in 2015, after originating the role of Hannibal Lecter in Silence! The Musical, an unauthorized parody of Silence of the Lambs, which has since gained a cult following (it’s a terrifically funny show). The massively talented Phantoms may make you wonder if there’s any competition among them, but Barrett assures it’s all love and admiration.

John Cudia. Ciarán Sheehan. Brent Barrett, Franc D'Ambrosio

Under the music supervision of David Caddick and music direction of Ryan Shirar, The Four Phantoms are joined by special guest Kaley Ann Voorhees, one of the youngest sopranos to play the role of Christine on Broadway. The recently released album The Four Phantoms in Concert—Live at Feinstein’s/54 Below is available now on Broadway Records.

Four Phantoms in Concert
McCallum Theatre, 73000 Fred Waring Dr in Palm Desert
April 6, 2024, at 8
for tickets ($45-$85), call 760.340.2787 or visit McCallum Theatre
for more dates and cities, visit Four Phantoms

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