Growing up, we had a pretty limited CD collection at home. My dad had a Time Life collection of the classical composers, and my mum liked Michael Bolton. The one recording we had that I do remember was of the musical Chess. I didn’t realise that it was the guys behind ABBA.
I don’t even think I really even understood what a musical was until I saw Phantom of the Operawhen I was about eight. Rob Guest played the Phantom and it was just a magical experience – I felt the rush of the chandelier fly over my head. I’ve since heard that apparently our OHS rules in Australia were a little laxer than in other countries at the time, so we had the fastest chandelier out of all the productions.
Phantomwas very much this defining experience in my life, so much so that for years I even kept...