Christine Daaé

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Christine Daaé
The Phantom of the Opera character
PhantomOp.jpg
Christine Daaé (Mary Philbin) in the 1925 film The Phantom of the Opera, alongside Erik, The Phantom of the Opera (Lon Chaney).
Created by Gaston Leroux
Information
Occupation Singer
Family Madame Valérius (adoptive mother)
Gustave Daaé (father, deceased)
Spouse(s) Viscount Raoul de Chagny
Significant other(s) Erik (The Phantom of the Opera)
Nationality Swedish

Christine Daaé is a fictional character and the female protagonist of Gaston Leroux's 1910 novel The Phantom of the Opera and of the various adaptations of the work. Erik, the Phantom of the Opera falls in love with her.

Character history[edit]

Lifetime[edit]

Christine Daaé was born in a town near Uppsala, Sweden. Her mother died when she was six. Raised by her father, they constantly traveled to fairs where he played the violin and she sang. They were discovered at one of these fairs by Professor Valérius, who took them to Gothenburg and then to Paris, providing for Christine's education.

Das Phantom der Oper, Dt. EA 1912, Albert Langen, München

Christine was extremely close to her father, who told her Scandinavian fairy-tales; the tale of the "Angel of Music" was her favorite. Christine entered the Paris Conservatoire and trained for four years to become an opera singer to please her father and Mamma Valérius, the bedridden wife of the late Professor. However, by the end of the four years, she had lost her passion for singing.

When Christine arrives at the Opéra Garnier, she was described as "sounding like a rusty hinge", but one person found the beauty hidden in her voice. When Erik, the Phantom of the Opera began to tutor her, he told her that he is the "Angel of Music" of whom her father had spoken. She believed him, and he inspired her soul back into her voice. Christine debuted at a gala at the opera in place of the singer Carlotta, who had fallen ill. Christine's singing was described as "seraphic".

Christine became torn between her loyalty and sympathy for her mentor, Erik, and her love for her childhood friend Viscount Raoul de Chagny.

In the Lofficier translation of the novel, Christine's age is given as 15 years old. However, this is a mistranslation of a passage that says her heart was "as pure as that of a 15 year old". The evidence of Christine's childhood friendship with Raoul, and her studies at the Paris Conservatoire, put her age at 20.

Andrew Lloyd Webber's musical The Phantom of the Opera[edit]

Christine is a chorus girl, who becomes the object of obsession, passion and love for the mysterious Phantom of the Opera. He becomes her mentor, and with his help, she is chosen to replace the company's prima donna, Carlotta. When she falls in love with her childhood sweetheart, Raoul, the Phantom kidnaps Christine in a jealous rage and drags her down to his lair. She is forced to choose between the Phantom and Raoul, but her compassion for the Phantom moves him to free them both and allow them to flee.

2004 Film[edit]

The film version of the musical follows the musical's script closely, but Christine's age is reduced. Her gravemark says that she was born in 1854, and the beginning the movie shows the setting as 1870, so that makes her 15 or 16 years old.

Father's name[edit]

In the novel, Christine's loving father is named Daddy Daaé. In the musical, he is called Gustave, and in Sarah Brightman's music video version of "Wishing You Were Somehow Here Again", his name is Charles.

Films[edit]

Lon Chaney as Erik in the silent movie of 1925 The novel was filmed several times. The first film adaptation was made in Germany in 1915, with Nils Chrisander (1884-1947) as the Phantom of the Opera andAud Egede-Nissen (1893-1974) as Christine Daaé. Many critics consider the Filming of 1925, by Carl Laemmles Studio Universal Pictures, as the most successful. The role of the phantom played here Lon Chaney. The same studio tried in 1943 with a sound film of Arthur Lubin to follow this success. The film used to a large extent the still existing scenes of the silent film. Claude Rains played the phantom. In 1960, a Spanish society turned a very free adaptation of the subject under the title El Fantasma de la Operetta . In 1962 the British production company Hammer Films focused on the horror genre. Another film adaptation was made in 1974 by 20th Century Fox, who moved the event to New York and changed the story very much. This film was released as The Phantom of the Paradise. The 1989 version, with Freddy-Krueger star Robert Englund in the title role, focused on the potential for violence of the phantom. On the other hand, in the same year as a German-French-Italian-American co-production, a TV-Secondary was created, which put the melodramatic love story in the foreground and waived television rights on Splatter effects. The phantom embodied Charles Dance . In 1998 the famous Italian Horrorfilm director, Dario Argento, starred with Julian Sands in the lead role of the fabric, but was not particularly successful at Kinokasse. Finally, in 2004, Joel Schumacher produced a film version that inspired the musical of Andrew Lloyd Webber. Here played Gerard Butler , the role of the Phantom. Originally there was already a filming based on the musical in the early 1990s, with the main actors of the premiere: Michael Crawford as the phantom and Sarah Brightman as Christine. Brightman was married to Lloyd Webber at the time, but shortly before the planned pre-production the marriage was broken and the filming was canceled.

Popular movies[edit]

Year Title Genre Original Title Director Title role
1915 The Phantom of the Opera Silent Film - Drama The Phantom of the Opera Ernst Matray Nils Chrisander
1925 The Phantom of the Opera Horror movie, The Phantom of the Opera Rupert Julian Lon Chaney sen.
1937 Ye ban ge sheng Horror movie Ye ban ge sheng Ma-Xu Weibang Menghe Gu
1943 Phantom of the opera Horror, music Phantom of the Opera Arthur Lubin Claude Rains
1962 The riddle of the eerie mask Horror movie The Phantom of the Opera Terence Fisher Herbert Lom
1983 The Phantom of Budapest Horror movie Phantom of the Opera Robert Markowitz Maximilian Schell
1987 The Phantom of the Opera Cartoon The Phantom of the Opera Al Guest , Jean Mathieson Aiden Grennell
1989 The Phantom of the Opera Horror movie Gaston Leroux 's The Phantom of the Opera Dwight H. Little Robert Englund
1990 The Phantom of the Opera Drama Miniseries Gaston Leroux 's The Phantom of the Opera Tony Richardson Charles Dance
1998 The Phantom of the Opera Horror movie Il Fantasma dell'opera Dario Argento Julian Sands
2004 The Phantom of the Opera Musical film The Phantom of the Opera Joel Schumacher Gerard Butler

Free Adaptations[edit]

year title original title Director title role
1974 The Phantom of Hollywood The Phantom of Hollywood Gene Levitt Jack Cassidy
1974 The phantom in paradise Phantom of the Paradise Brian De Palma William Finley
1989 Phantom Nightmare - Phantom of Death Phantom of the Mall: Eric's Revenge Richard Friedman Derek Rydall
1989 Phantom of the Ritz Phantom of the Ritz Allen Plone Joshua Sussman

Basis[edit]

Several researchers claim the character Christine Daaé was based upon the real-life Swedish-born opera star Christina Nilsson, also known as Kristina Nilsson or Christine Nilsson.[1][2][3][4][5] This claim is unverified by any official source, but it is supported by several biographical similarities between Nilsson and Daaé. The most obvious is that Nilsson, like Daaé, was born in Sweden and trained in Paris.

Actresses[edit]

The first actress to portray Christine Daaé was Aud Egede-Nissen in the 1916 German silent version by Ernst Matray, Das Gespenst im Opernhaus or Das Phantom der Oper.

Edyta Krzemień as Christine Daaé
  • Sarah Brightman debuted the role in the 1986 Andrew Lloyd Webber musical.
  • Patti Cohenour debuted the role in the 1986 Broadway production, alternating with Sarah Brightman. Cohenour was thus the first American Christine and went on to reprise the role for the First Canadian National Tour.
  • Glory Crampton originated the role in the much revived Maury Yeston and Arthur Kopit 1990 musical Phantom.
  • Jill Schoelen played Christine Day in Dwight H. Little's 1989 film version.
  • Rebecca Caine debuted the role in the Canadian production (1989) and featured on the Canadian Cast album.
  • Teri Polo took the role in the 1990 television miniseries version.
  • American Janet Marie Chvatal performed the role in 1991-1992 in the German version of Das Phantom der Oper in Vienna, Austria.[6]
  • Asia Argento played her in the 1998 film
  • Claudia Cota played her twice in The Phantom of the Opera (musical 2000) by Morris Gilbert in Mexico and Player her on Phantom of the Opera (musical 2009) in Argentina by Harold Prince.
  • Emmy Rossum played her in the 2004 film version of the Lloyd Webber musical.
  • Sierra Boggess first played Christine in the 2006 version of the Lloyd Webber musical, Phantom – The Las Vegas Spectacular. In 2010 she originated the role in Lloyd Webber's sequel, Love Never Dies. She next played Christine in the 25th Anniversary concert, The Phantom of the Opera at the Royal Albert Hall, in 2011,on Broadway in 2013 and 2014, and in Paris to celebrate the show's 30th anniversary in 2016.
  • Samantha Hill understudied the role during Boggess' tenure, and took over the lead on Broadway from 2012 to 2013.
  • Kimilee Bryant played the role in the Lloyd Webber musical on Broadway (1994–95; 1998; 2009–2012 occasionally) and in the Swiss (in German; 1995–96), U.S. National Tour (1996–98) and Toronto (1999) productions.
  • Gina Beck played the role in the Lloyd Webber musical in London.
  • Sofia Escobar played the role of Christine Daaé, in The Phantom of the Opera at Her Majesty's Theatre in London, from 2010 to 2013.
  • Jennifer Hope Wills played Christine in the Lloyd Webber musical on Broadway and on a Canadian tour of the musical.
  • Julia Udine played Christine on Broadway in the Lloyd Webber musical from 2014-2016, after playing the role in the North American tour in 2013–2014.
  • Ali Ewoldt has been playing Christine on Broadway in the Andrew Lloyd Webber musical since 2016. She is the first Asian-American actress to be cast in the lead role.[7]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Jussi Björling Museum: Four Great Nordic Singers Archived 17 April 2004 at the Wayback Machine.
  2. ^ NYSL Library Notes: Status: In Cataloging Archived 3 July 2011 at the Wayback Machine. (1 October 2008)
  3. ^ Linton, Elizabeth Lynn. The Rebel of the Family p. 362, ISBN 1-55111-293-0
  4. ^ Hollingsworth, Amy Gifts of Passage: What the Dying Tell Us with the Gifts They Leave Behind p. 38, ISBN 0-8499-1920-7
  5. ^ Eriksson, Lill. Förtrollad av Fantomen för snart 100:e gången (Swedish) Eventnews.se
  6. ^ Program book for the Vienna Production of Phantom of the Opera (November, 1990 / 2. Publication October, 1991) Programmbuch zur Aufführung des Musicals Das Phantom der Oper
  7. ^ "Broadway's Phantom of the Opera Announces First Asian-American Christine | Playbill". Playbill. Retrieved 2017-01-19. 

External links[edit]