2020 marks the official 35th anniversary of one of the most legendary shows in Musical Theater history…. Les Miserables. Today marks 35 YEARS since the musical's legendary inaugural debut at London's Barbican Theatre. Despite the barricades, streets, and places filled with EMPTY CHAIRS AT EMPTY TABLES at this time, the legacy of the REVOLUTION still lives on.
It has just been announced that a brand new Live album of Les Misérables' recent critically acclaimed sold out staged concert production in London's West End last year. Pre-orders will be available WHEN TOMORROW COMES!!! Recorded at London's Gielgud Theatre, get ready to discover this timeless musical like never before featuring a cast and orchestra of 65 led by….
Alfie Boe in his star-making turn as "Jean Vailjean",
Olivier Award winning legend Michael Ball as "Inspector Javert",
West End favorite Carrie Hope Fletcher as "Fantine",
British comedy star Matt Lucas as "Thernadier",
Katy Secombe as "Madame Thernadier",
The X Factor favorite SHAN AKO as "Eponine",
newcomer Lily Kerhoas as "Cosette",
Bradley Jean as "Enjolras",
Rob Houchen as "Marius".
This concert production of LES MIZ last year was part of a huge year of changes for the show in the Summer of 2019, the show's legendary inaugural and last standing original revolving production (directed by John Caird and Trevor Nunn) closed right after 34 years at London's Queens Theatre. During the time of the concert next door at the Gielgud, the Queen's Theatre went under a full 4 month full scale renovation which consisted of expanding….
the backstage area,
and restoring the Theater's original W.G. Sprague Box Seats).
In addition, The Queen's Theatre was renamed the Stephen Sondheim Theatre in honor of Stephen Sondheim's 90th Birthday.
Following the limited engagement of the Staged Concert production, LES MIZ moved back and reopened in the Sondheim Theatre in December 2019. However, it reopened with Cameron Mackintosh's NEW production (that was initially created for the show's 25th Anniversary) that continues to play all around the world directed by Laurence Connor.
The New production continued to play all around the world till Live Theater was shutdown due to the COVID-19 pandemic. It's scheduled to reopen its companies in London's West End, on Tour across America, and around the world in 2021.
Along with the Live Album, you can also visually watch the Staged Concert wherever music and movies are downloaded and streamed along with being available on DVD and Blu-Ray. The filmed performance of the concert was initially released in Movie Theaters for a limited run this past Holiday season.
In case anyone may not know, LES MISERABLES is a musical adaptation of Victor Hugo's long best-selling novel. It features an original score by Claude-Michel Schonberg, Alain Boubil, Trevor Nunn, and John Caird. Set in Revolutionary France, it tells the tale of "Jean Vailjean" who breaks his parole and stars his life over following 19 years behind bars. Along the way, "Vailjean" is persuited by a ruthless police officer who initially captured him, and meets an lost-spirited dying woman who tells the man to promise her that he will care for her daughter. Notable songs include AT THE END OF THE DAY. I DREAMED A DREAM, MASTER OF THE HOUSE, DO YOU HEAR THE PEOPLE SING, ONE DAY MORE, ON MY OWN, the haunting BRING HIM HOME, and EMPTY CHAIRS AT EMPTY TABLES.
LES MISERABLES was initially first conceived as a concept album turned stage production that initially premiered in Paris (and sung entirely in French) in 1980 for 3 months, A few months later, director Peter Fargo gave Sir Cameron Mackintosh (following the success of the West End debut of Cats) a copy of that concept album and encouraged him that he should translate the musical entirely into English. Along with the Royal Shakespeare Company, Mackintosh brought a full cast together and it premiered at the Barbican Theatre in 1985. However, the initial opening night was not well received by critics. During the 3 month run at the Barbican, the company kept revamping the show plus released a best selling original London cast album that made the critics change their minds.
It then later made it's way officially into the West End at London's Palace Theatre before later transferring to its current London home at the Queen's Theatre where it ran for over 34 years.
Currently, the London production of LES MIZ is now the NEW revival production created for the show's 25th Anniversary.
The musical finally reached the US in 1986 with a sold out run in Washington DC before heading straight to Broadway that very next year. It originally opened at the Broadway Theatre before transferring to the Imperial Theatre running for an incredible 6,680 performances on Broadway. It became the 2nd Longest Running Musical in Broadway history at the time surpassing the original A CHORUS LINE. The original cast included…
Colm Wilkinson (who also starred in the original London cast ) as "Jean Vailjean",
Randy Graff as "Fantine",
David Bryant as "Marius",
Tony nominee Judy Kuhn as "Cosette",
Tony winner Frances Ruffelle (who also starred in the original London cast) as "Eponine",
Tony winner Michael Maguire as "Enjolras",
Tony nominee Terrence Mann as "Inspector Javert",
Leo Burmester as "Thernadier",
and Jennifer Butt as "Madame Thernadier".
During its 16 year run, the show had a numerous amount of cast replacements.
The original Broadway production of LES MISERABLES was nominated for 12 Tony Awards in 1987 winning 8 including Best Musical.
From there, LES MISERABLES went on to become a worldwide smash hit musical being performed in almost every major language. The show later went on to be revived twice on the Great White Way. The first revival happened in 2006 at the Broadhurst Theatre running for 480 performances. It featured the same original staging. This revival featured an all star Broadway cast including…
Tony nominee Alexander Gemignani as "Jean Vailjean",
Tony nominee Daphne Rubin-Vega as "Fantine",
Tony nominee Adam Jacobs as "Marius",
Ali Ewoldt as "Cosette",
Tony nominee Celia Keenan-Bolger as "Eponine",
Aaron Lazar as "Enjolras",
Tony nominee Norm Lewis as "Inspector Javert",
Tony winner Gary Beach as "Thernadier",
and the musical's acclaimed long running West End cast member Jenny Galloway as "Madame Thernadier".
It also featured numerous cast replacements. This revival did not receive any Tony Awards in 2007 due to it still having the same original staging..
The most recent Broadway revival happened in 2014 with Sir Cameron Mackintosh presenting an all new production that initial toured the UK and the US for the show's 25th Anniversary. It returned to where most of the original run stayed at the Imperial Theatre running for 1,026 performance. The revival featured…
Tony and Olivier nominee Ramin Karimloo as "Jean Vailjean",
Caissie Levy as "Fantine",
Andy Minetus as "Marius",
Samantha Hill as "Cosette",
Tony winner Nikki James as "Eponine",
Kyle Scatliffe as "Enjolras",
Tony nominee Will Swenson as "Inspector Javert",
Cliff Saunders as "Thernadier",
and Tony nominee Keala Settle as "Madame Thernadier".
It also featured numerous cast replacements.
The revival was nominated for 3 Tony Awards in 2014 including Best Revival of a Musical. However, the show lost all the categories. A new touring production of this recent revival is currently on a National Tour.
LES MISERABLES was also well captured on film 3 times. The first time was the acclaimed 10th Anniversary concert in 1995 filmed at London's Royal Albert Hall featuring the cast singing through the score live in costume standing at classical looking microphones. It aired on PBS and is still available to own on DVD. The cast featured..
Colm Wilkinson reprising his acclaimed performance of "Jean Vailjean",
Ruthie Henshall as "Fantine",
acclaimed West End star Michael Ball reprising the role of "Marius" which he originated in London,
Judy Kuhn reprising her Broadway performance of "Cosette",
Tony and Olivier Award winner Lea Salonga as "Eponine",
Michael Maguire reprising the role of "Enjolras",
3 time Olivier Award winner Phillip Quast as "Inspector Javert",
Alun Armstrong reprising the role of "Thernadier" which he originated in London,
and Jenny Galloway as "Madame Thernadier".
The ending also featured a spectacular finale featuring International artists who have played the role of "Jean Vailjean" singing in their native language.
The second time the musical was captured on film was for the spectacular acclaimed 25th Anniversary concert production at The O2 in London. It had a spectacular built set and a phenomenal cast all singing the score thorough classical looking microphones. The cast starred…
Alfie Boe who became a worldwide star from this performance as "Jean Vailjean",
Lea Salonga (who previously played "Eponine" in the 10th Anniversary concert) graduating to the role of "Fantine",
Pop sensation Nick Jonas (who played the role of "Gavorche" in the original Broadway closing cast) graduating to the role of "Marius",
Katie Hall as "Cosette",
Samantha Barks as "Eponine",
Ramin Karimloo (who graduated a few years later to the role of "Jean Vailjean) as "Enjolras",
Norm Lewis reprising his acclaimed performance from the 2006 Broadway revival as "Inspector Javert",
acclaimed UK TV star Matt Lucas as "Thernadier",
and once again Jenny Galloway as "Madame Thernadier".
In addition during the finale, Boe joined original star Colm Wilkinson along with John Owen Jones (who was appearing in the world premiere of the new 25th Anniversary touring production at the time), and Simon Bowman (who was appearing in the West End production at the time) performing a quarter version of Vailjean haunted showstopper BRING HIME HOME. Plus, members of the original London cast returned to join the 300 cast members on stage for a spectacular rendition of ONE DAY MORE as well as numerous kids that appeared in School productions of the show around the world.
Most recently, the acclaimed film adaptation from Universal Pictures hit the big screen in Movie Theatres worldwide in 2012 featuring a full all star cast. The cast included…
Hugh Jackman as "Jean Vailjean",
Anne Hathaway as "Fantine",
Eddie Redmayne as "Marius",
Amanda Seyfried as "Cosette",
Samantha Barks (who was discovered following the success of the acclaimed 25th Anniversary concert) as "Eponine",
Aaron Tviet as "Enjolras",
Russell Crowe as "Inspector Javert",
Sasha Baron Cohen as "Thernadier",
and Helena Bonham Carter as "Madame Thernadier".
The film also featured a new additional song written especially for the film called SUDDENLY sung by the character of "Jean Vailjean" expressing the feeling of caring for "Cosette" after her mother "Fantine" disappears.
The film went on to become a worldwide box office hit winning the Golden Globe for Best Picture. It also won 3 Oscars including Best Supporting Actress (for Anne Hathaway).
Today, LES MISERABLES continues to have audiences an emotional mess with its productions around the world along with school, community, and regional productions everywhere.
THE DREAMS WE DREAMT WILL BE BACK!!!
HAPPY 35 YEARS LES MIZ!!!
Who is excited about this new recording?!!!