REVIEW: Les Misérables

REVIEW: Les Misérables

Updated On: May 1, 2018
News and Information, London
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    LES MISÉRABLES is now the world’s longest-running musical, seen by over 60 million people in 42 countries. Cameron Mackintosh’s legendary production of Boublil and Schönberg’s classic sweeps its audience through an epic tale of passion and destruction in 19th century France. Account Executive Patrick Tucker recently went along to the Queen’s Theatre to re-visit one of his all time favourite musicals and discovered that the show is still a truly special experience for groups.

    Can it really be almost 27 years since I first saw this wonderful show in its first week in early December 1985 at the Palace Theatre in London? I was so moved then by Act 1, that at the interval I just sat in my seat, read the programme and felt thoroughly emotional at what I had already seen. I didn’t even go into the bar!! Praise indeed!

    Little did I know then how much involvement I would have with this – my favourite show of all time - over the next 27 years. I’ve now seen the show in London at least a dozen times and am about to see two performances of a sell-out week at my local theatre. Yes I do rather enjoy the show!

    Having said all that you’d assume I know it rather well. Not so. Every performance with every change in cast brings new aspects of characters and voices to the fore. The famous songs are not very difficult musically but are so important to the story line (no spoken dialogue) that every word and nuance of meaning has to be got across to the audience. The cast I recently saw managed all that so well. There were many differences since I last saw the show in London with a few modern words inserted here and there and extra bars of music now and then, but overall the story was still just as enthralling, entertaining and emotional – in every way – as it ever was.

    There were very few well-known names in the cast – only two that I knew well – but this is very much an ensemble piece with a lot happening on stage nearly all the time. In spite of the amazing record shattering longevity of this musical it never ceases to amaze me how year after year they find new cast members good enough to all perform at the same level of excellence. Yes we all have favourites in every new cast but the quality is always there.

    To tell the truth, this show doesn’t really need a favourable critique. I think 27 years says more than I can say to prove the point of its amazing entertainment value.