Laurence Connor's new touring production of Andrew Lloyd Webber's The Phantom of the Opera opened in Manchester last night (10 April 2012, previews from 4 April).

The production, which is brought to the stage by impresario Cameron Mackintosh, stars John Owen-Jones as the masked man opposite Katie Hall as Christine. They are joined in the cast by Simon Bailey, Angela M Caesar, Andy Hockley, Simon Green, Elizabeth Marsh, Vincent Pirillo and Hannah Cadec.

From Manchester, where the production continues until 19 May, The Phantom of the Opera will tour to, Bristol, Dublin, Leeds, Edinburgh, Milton Keynes, Cardiff and Southampton. Earl Carpenter takes over the role of The Phantom later in the tour, taking over from Owen-Jones on 1 October, half way through the show's Edinburgh dates.

Further touring venues are still to be announced from February 2013 onwards.

The new production is directed by Laurence Connor, whose recent credits include the new 25th anniversary touring production of Les Miserables, the show's 25th Anniversary Concert at The O2, the UK tour of Miss Saigon, the 25th Anniversary Concert of Phantom of the Opera at the Royal Albert Hall and the new touring production of Oliver!.

The new touring production of Phantom has choreography by Scott Ambler, set design by Paul Brown, costume design by Maria Bjornson, lighting design by Paule Constable and sound design by Mick Potter. The production is being 'overseen' by Mackintosh and choreographer Matthew Bourne.

Production photographs showing Katie Hall and John Owen-Jones as well as the show's touring company performing the "Masquerade" and fictional operas "Hannibal" have recently been released.

The company of The Phantom of the Opera perform the Masquerade
The company of The Phantom of the Opera perform the "Masquerade".

John Owen-Jones & Katie Hall in The Phantom of the Opera
John Owen-Jones & Katie Hall in The Phantom of the Opera.

Katie Hall & John Owen-Jones in The Phantom of the Opera
Katie Hall & John Owen-Jones in The Phantom of the Opera.

The company of The Phantom of the Opera perform Hannibal
The company of The Phantom of the Opera perform "Hannibal".