Les Misérables (musical)
|Lyrics||Alain Boublil and Jean-Marc Natel (French lyrics)
Herbert Kretzmer (English adaptation)
Trevor Nunn and John Caird (adaptation)
|Basis||1862 novel by Victor Hugo
1985 West End
1987 First US Tour
1995 10th Anniversary: The Dream Cast in Concert
2000 Buenos Aires
2002 México DF
2006 Broadway revival
2009 25th Anniversary Tour
2010 25th Anniversary Concert
2012 film adaptation
Multiple productions worldwide
2013 Toronto revival
2014 Broadway revival
|Awards||Tony Award for Best Musical
Tony Award for Best Book
Tony Award for Best Score
Les Misérables (pron.: / / or / /; French pronunciation: [le mizeˈʁabl]), colloquially known as Les Mis or Les Miz / /, is a sung-through musical based on the novel of the same name by French poet and playwright Victor Hugo. It has music by Claude-Michel Schönberg, original French lyrics by Alain Boublil and Jean-Marc Natel, with an English-language libretto by Herbert Kretzmer. Set in early 19th-century France, it is the story of Jean Valjean, a burly French peasant of abnormal strength and potentially violent nature, and his quest for redemption after serving nineteen years in jail for having stolen a loaf of bread for his starving sister's child. Valjean decides to break his parole and start his life anew after a kindly bishop inspires him to, but he is relentlessly tracked down by a police inspector named Javert. Along the way, Valjean and a slew of characters are swept into a revolutionary period in France, where a group of young idealists make their last stand at a street barricade.
The musical was originally conceived and produced in France, before its English-language adaptation, which opened at the Barbican Centre in London, England, on 8 October 1985, where the production overcame bad reviews through word of mouth, launching what has turned out to be a global phenomenon.
Originally released as a French-language concept album, the first musical-stage adaptation of Les Misérables was presented at a Paris sports arena, the Palais des Sports, in 1980. However, the first production closed after three months when the booking contract expired.
In 1983, about six months after producer Cameron Mackintosh had opened Cats on Broadway, he received a copy of the French concept album from director Peter Farago. Farago had been impressed by the work and asked Mackintosh to produce an English-language version of the show. Initially reluctant, Mackintosh eventually agreed. Mackintosh in conjunction with the Royal Shakespeare Company, assembled a production team to adapt the French musical for a British audience. After two years in development, the English-language version opened in London on 8 October 1985, by the Royal Shakespeare Company at the Barbican Centre, then the London home of the RSC. The success of the West End musical led to a Broadway production.
At the opening of the London production, critical reviews were negative. The Sunday Telegraph's Francis King described the show as "a lurid Victorian melodrama produced with Victorian lavishness" and Michael Ratcliffe in the Observer dubbed the show "a witless and synthetic entertainment", while literary scholars condemned the project for converting classic literature into a musical. Public opinion differed: the box office received record orders. The three-month engagement sold out, and reviews improved. The London production, as of March 2013, has run continuously since October 1985: the second longest-running musical in the world after The Fantasticks, the second longest-running West End show after The Mousetrap, It is the longest-running musical in the West End followed by The Phantom of the Opera. In 2010, it played its ten-thousandth performance in London, at Queen's Theatre. On 3 October 2010, the show celebrated its 25th anniversary with three productions running in London: the original production at the Queen's Theatre; the 25th Anniversary touring production at its 1985 try-out venue, the Barbican Centre; and the 25th Anniversary concert at London's O2 Arena.
The Broadway production opened 12 March 1987 and ran until 18 May 2003, closing after 6,680 performances. It is the fourth longest-running Broadway show in history and was the second-longest at the time. The show was nominated for 12 Tony Awards and won eight, including Best Musical and Best Original Score.
Subsequently, numerous tours, international and regional productions have been staged, and several recordings have been made, as well as concert and broadcasts productions. A Broadway revival opened in 2006 at the Broadhurst Theatre and closed in 2008. The show placed first in a BBC Radio 2 listener poll of Britain's "Number One Essential Musicals" in 2005, receiving more than forty percent of the votes. A film version directed by Tom Hooper was released at the end of 2012 to generally positive reviews.
The musical's emblem is a picture of the waif Cosette sweeping the Thénardiers' inn (which occurs in the musical during "Castle on a Cloud"), usually shown cropped to a head-and-shoulders portrait superimposed on the French flag. The image is based on an etching by Gustave Brion based on the drawing by Émile Bayard. It appeared in several of the novel's earliest French-language editions.
Act I 
In Bagne prison in Toulon, France, in 1815, the prisoners work at hard labour ("Work Song"). After 19 years in prison (five for stealing bread for his starving sister's son and her family, and the rest for trying to escape), Jean Valjean, "prisoner 24601," is released on parole by the policeman Javert. By law, Valjean must display a yellow ticket-of-leave, which identifies him as an ex-convict ("On Parole"). Valjean is turned away by many people due to his being a convict. However, The Bishop of Digne offers him food and shelter. Overnight, Valjean steals silver from the bishop, and the police catch him. The Bishop lies to save Valjean and not only lets him keep the silver he stole, but also gives him two more valuable candlesticks. The Bishop tells Valjean that he must use the silver "to become an honest man" and that he has "bought (Valjean's) soul for God" ("Valjean Arrested, Valjean Forgiven"). Ashamed of what he did, yet humbled by the bishop's mercy and kindness, Valjean follows the Bishop's advice and tears up his yellow ticket, breaking his parole ("Valjean's Soliloquy" / "What Have I Done?").
Eight years later, Valjean has assumed a new identity as Monsieur Madeleine, a wealthy factory owner and mayor of Montreuil-sur-Mer. One of his workers, Fantine, has a fight when another worker discovers she is sending money to her secret illegitimate daughter, Cosette, who lives with an innkeeper and his wife ("At the End of the Day"). Fantine and the worker fight, and the Mayor breaks up the conflict but asks his factory foreman to resolve it. The other women demand Fantine's dismissal, and because she had previously rejected his advances, the foreman throws Fantine out. Fantine reflects on her broken dreams and about her lover, who left her and her daughter ("I Dreamed a Dream"). Desperate for money, she sells her locket, her hair, and becomes a prostitute ("Lovely Ladies"). When she fights back against an abusive customer (Bamatabois), Javert, now a police inspector stationed in Montreuil-sur-Mer, arrests her. The Mayor arrives and, realizing his part in the ruination of Fantine, orders Javert to let her go and takes her to a hospital ("Fantine's Arrest").
Soon afterwards, the Mayor rescues Fauchelevent, who is pinned by a runaway cart ("The Runaway Cart"); this reminds Javert of the abnormally strong Jean Valjean, whom he has sought for years for breaking parole. However, Javert assures the Mayor that Valjean has been arrested recently (actually a man named Champmathieu). At first, Valjean thinks the man could be his chance to escape his past life, but unwilling to see an innocent man go to prison in his place, Valjean confesses his identity to the court ("Who Am I?—The Trial"). At the hospital, a delirious Fantine thinks Cosette is in the room with her. Valjean arrives and promises to Fantine he will find and look after her daughter ("Come to Me" / "Fantine's Death"). Happy upon hearing this, Fantine dies. Suddenly, Javert confronts Valjean. Valjean asks Javert for three days to fetch Cosette, but Javert refuses to believe his honest intentions. They suddenly argue, and it is revealed that Javert "was born inside a jail." Valjean once again promises to Fantine he "will raise (Cosette) to the light." He then knocks Javert out and escapes ("The Confrontation").
Meanwhile, in Montfermeil, the rascally innkeepers, the Thénardiers, have been working and abusing little Cosette, while indulging their own daughter, Éponine. Cosette dreams of a better life, and imagines "a room that's full of toys" full of "a hundred boys and girls" and "a lady all in white." Mme. Thénardier arrives and angrily accuses Cosette of "slacking," and orders Cosette to retrieve water from the woods. Afraid of going alone, Cosette does not leave. Éponine tauntingly points to Cosette to show her mother that Cosette is still there. Mme. Thénardier warns her to go or she will "forget to be nice," while Éponine teases Cosette and pushes her out the door ("Castle on a Cloud"). The Thénardiers cheat their customers in various ways together, despite Mme. Thénardier showing contempt for her husband ("Master of the House"). Valjean finds Cosette in the woods and accompanies her back to the inn ("The Well Scene"). He offers the Thénardiers payment to take her away, and informs them of Fantine's death ("The Bargain"). The Thénardiers pretend to have concern for Cosette, and they tell Valjean his "intentions may not be correct," so he pays them 1,500 Francs to let him take her away. The Thénardiers accept the money, however, upon Valjean and Cosette's departure, the couple deem the money not enough. Valjean and Cosette leave for Paris ("The Waltz of Treachery").
Ten years later, Paris is in upheaval because General Lamarque, the only man in the government who shows mercy to the poor, is ill and may soon die. The young street urchin Gavroche mingles with the prostitutes and beggars on the street, while students Marius Pontmercy and Enjolras discuss the general's imminent demise ("Look Down"). The Thénardiers have since lost their inn, and Thénardier now leads a street gang. They prepare to con some charitable visitors who are about to arrive, who are Valjean and Cosette. Éponine sees Marius, whom she secretly loves, and she grabs his books, telling him she could have become a student herself and not to judge her on her appearance. Mme. Thénardier tells her daughter to keep watch for the police, and Éponine warns Marius to stay away. Concerned over what may occur, Marius chases after Éponine when she runs off, but he bumps into Cosette and immediately falls head-over-heels in love. Thénardier recognizes the visitor as Valjean, and with his gang, they ambush him. Marius protects Cosette from the ambush. As Thénardier sees the brand on Valjean's chest, Éponine warns that Javert is coming ("The Robbery"). Javert thwarts the Thénardiers' attempt to rob Valjean and Cosette, not recognizing Valjean until after Valjean takes Cosette and escapes. Thénardier informs Javert of the brand he saw on Valjean ("Javert's Intervention"), and Javert vows to recapture him ("Stars"). Meanwhile, Éponine remembers Cosette from when they were children. Marius persuades Éponine to help him find Cosette. Despite her own feelings for him, she reluctantly agrees to help ("Éponine's Errand").
At a small café, Enjolras prepares a group of idealistic students for a revolution ("The ABC Café—Red and Black"). When Gavroche brings the news of General Lamarque's death, the students march into the streets ("Do You Hear the People Sing?"). At Valjean and Cosette's house, Cosette thinks about Marius. Although Valjean realizes that Cosette has grown up, he refuses to tell her about her past or her mother's. Éponine leads Marius to Cosette ("Rue Plumet—In My Life"). Marius and Cosette introduce themselves and declare their mutually strong feelings of romantic love for each other, while Éponine sadly watches them ("A Heart Full of Love"). She suddenly sees her father and his gang attempting to rob Valjean's house, and stops them by screaming ("The Attack on Rue Plumet"). Valjean hears the scream, and Cosette tells him that she was the one who screamed. Valjean, believing that Javert was outside his house, tells Cosette that they must flee the country.
On the eve of the 1832 Paris Uprising, Valjean prepares to go into exile; Cosette and Marius sadly part in despair; Éponine mourns the loss of Marius; Enjolras encourages all of Paris to join the revolution as he and the other students prepare for the upcoming conflict; hearing Marius ponder whether to follow where Cosette is going or join the other students, Éponine takes Marius to where the other students are, and when the two reach them he tells Enjolras he will fight with them, while she secretly joins them as well; Javert briefs the soldiers under his command while he reveals his plans to spy on the students; and the Thénardiers hide underground and look forward to robbing the corpses of those who will be killed during the battle. Everyone ponders what this "tomorrow" will bring ("One Day More").
Act II 
As the students begin a barricade, Javert, disguised as one of the rebels, volunteers to "spy" on the government troops. Marius discovers Éponine has disguised herself as a boy and that she too has joined the revolutionaries. She tells him that she knows she should not take part, but chooses to stay with him. Marius sends her to safety by having her deliver a farewell letter to Cosette. Valjean intercepts the letter, promising Éponine he will tell Cosette about it. In the letter, he learns about Marius and Cosette's romantic relationship ("Building the Barricade—Upon These Stones"). Éponine walks the streets of Paris alone, imagining that Marius is there with her, but laments that her love for Marius will never be reciprocated as he only has eyes for Cosette; nevertheless, she decides to rejoin him at the barricade ("On My Own").
After the students defy an army warning that they surrender or die ("At the Barricade—Upon These Stones"); the disguised Javert tells the students that the government will attack ("Javert's Arrival"). Gavroche exposes him as a spy, and the students detain him ("Little People"). Éponine is shot by the soldiers as she returns to the barricades and collapses into Marius' arms. As Marius holds her, she assures him that she feels no pain and that he will keep her "safe" and "close." Éponine leans up and kisses Marius as a sign of her unrequited love for him, and she dies in his arms ("A Little Fall of Rain"). Marius mourns her death, while Enjolras and the other students are left devastated at this first loss of life at the barricades. The students resolve to fight in her name, and they carry her body away. Valjean arrives at the barricades in search of Marius, disguised as a soldier as means to get there safely ("Night of Anguish"). As the first battle erupts, Valjean saves Enjolras by shooting a sniper. He asks Enjolras to be the one to kill the imprisoned Javert, and Enjolras grants his request. As soon as Valjean and Javert are alone, Valjean orders Javert to leave the barricades. Javert warns Valjean that if he releases him, he will still arrest him. Valjean says there are no "conditions" to letting him go, and holds no blame toward him. Valjean gives his address to Javert, and Javert leaves. Valjean shoots his weapon in the air to make the students think he had executed Javert ("The First Attack"). The students settle down for the night and reminisce. Marius mourns over Cosette, and Valjean overhears him ("Drink with Me"). As Marius sleeps, Valjean prays to God to save Marius from the onslaught that is to come ("Bring Him Home").
As dawn approaches, Enjolras realises that the people of Paris have abandoned the rebels. He sends away women and fathers of children but resolves to fight on ("Dawn of Anguish"). Gavroche climbs to the other side of the barricades to gather ammunition for the students, but is shot dead by the soldiers ("The Second Attack / Death of Gavroche"). Enjolras and the students realize that they will probably die. The army gives a final warning to surrender, but the rebels refuse, and all are killed except Valjean and Marius ("The Final Battle"). Carrying a wounded Marius on his back, Valjean escapes into the sewers, while Javert enters the sewers as well. Thénardier, also in the sewers, has been looting bodies ("Dog Eats Dog"). He takes a ring off Marius' "corpse" as Valjean is passed out, and then escapes when he sees Valjean getting up. When Valjean reaches the sewer's exit, he runs into Javert, who has been waiting for him. Valjean begs Javert to give him one hour to bring Marius to a doctor, and Javert reluctantly agrees. Because Valjean saved his life, Javert cannot bring himself to arrest Valjean. Unable to fit Valjean's behavior into his own strict code of right and wrong and good and evil, Javert commits suicide by throwing himself into the Seine ("Soliloquy - Javert's Suicide)".
Back on the streets, women mourn the deaths of the young students ("Turning") as Marius mourns for his friends ("Empty Chairs at Empty Tables"). As he wonders who saved him from the barricades, Cosette comforts him, and they reaffirm their strong, blossoming romance. Valjean realizes that Cosette "was never (his) to keep" and gives them his blessing ("Every Day"). Valjean confesses to Marius that he is an escaped convict and must go away because his presence endangers Cosette ("Valjean's Confession"). Valjean makes Marius promise never to tell Cosette, and Marius makes only a half-hearted attempt to hold him back. Marius and Cosette marry ("Wedding Chorale"). The Thénardiers crash the reception in disguise as "The Baron and Baroness du Thénard". Thénardier tells Marius that Valjean is a murderer, saying that he saw him carrying a corpse in the sewers after the barricades fell. When Thénardier shows him the ring that he took from the corpse, Marius realises that Valjean saved his life. Marius strikes Thénardier, the newlyweds leave, and the Thénardiers enjoy the party and celebrate their survival ("Beggars at the Feast").
Meanwhile, Valjean prepares for his death in a convent, having nothing left to live for. The spirit of Fantine appears to him, thanking him for raising her only daughter,and tells him she's taking him to Heaven. Cosette and Marius rush in to bid farewell. Valjean thanks God for letting him live long enough to see Cosette again. Marius thanks him for saving his life. ("Epilogue - Valjean's Death"). Valjean gives Cosette his confession to read all about his troubled past and her mother Fantine, and the spirits of Fantine and Éponine guide him to Heaven, where those who have died at the barricades ask once more: "Do You Hear the People Sing?" ("Finale").
Musical numbers 
|Jean Valjean||dramatic tenor||Prisoner 24601. After being released from imprisonment for serving nineteen years (five for stealing a loaf of bread and fourteen for multiple escape attempts), he decides to break his parole and turns his life around, proving that the corrupt can make themselves virtuous and selfless once more. He changes his identity, becoming the wealthy mayor of a small town. He later adopts Cosette, the only daughter of Fantine. At the end, he eventually dies and the spirit of Fantine thanks him for raising her child.|
|Inspector Javert||baritone or bass-baritone||Respects the law above all else and relentlessly pursues Valjean, hoping to bring the escaped convict to justice. He firmly believes that humans cannot change for the better. In the end he commits suicide.|
|The Bishop of Digne||baritone||Houses Valjean after his release from jail and gives him gifts of silver and absolution. His acts of kindness inspire Valjean to improve himself and escape the label of "criminal."|
|The Factory Foreman||baritone or tenor||Foreman of Valjean's (Valjean has assumed the name Madeleine) jet bead factory in Montreuil-sur-Mer which employs Fantine and other workers. The Foreman fires Fantine from the factory when she persists in resisting his overt sexual advances and because it is discovered that she is the mother of an illegitimate child (Cosette) living elsewhere.|
|The Factory Girl||lyric mezzo-soprano||In the original Broadway and London versions of the musical, the Factory Girl is mistress to the Factory Foreman. The Factory Girl discovers that the Foreman has his eyes set on bedding Fantine, so she does what she believes is necessary to see to it that Fantine gets fired. At the factory (in "At the End of the Day"), the Factory Girl intercepts a letter that the Thénardiers have sent to Fantine requesting that Fantine send them more money to care for Cosette who is ill (a lie). The letter exposes Fantine as the mother of an illegitimate child, and the Factory Girl shows it to the Foreman, insisting that Fantine be fired. The Foreman complies.|
|Fantine||lyric mezzo-soprano||A poor worker who loses her job and, as a result, turns to prostitution in order to continue paying the Thénardiers to care for her illegitimate daughter, Cosette. As Fantine dies of consumption, she asks Valjean to look after her child. Ultimately she appears as a spirit and escorts the dying Valjean to Heaven.|
|Old Woman||contralto||Affectionately called "The Hair Hag" in many of the original US companies, the Old Woman is the character who talks Fantine into selling her hair before Fantine becomes a prostitute.|
|Crone||soprano||Also called "The Locket Crone," this character is the woman who talks Fantine into selling her precious locket for much less than it is worth.|
|Bamatabois||baritone or tenor||An upper-class "fop" who tries to buy Fantine's services. He treats her abusively so she refuses him. When Javert enters the scene, Bamatabois tries to cover the fact that he was soliciting a prostitute by having her arrested for attacking him.|
|Fauchelevent||baritone or tenor||In a role reduced from the novel, Fauchelevent appears only in the Cart Crash scene, where he is trapped under the cart and rescued by Valjean. He is an elderly man who has fallen upon hard times.|
|Champmathieu||silent||A man who is arrested and on trial because he is believed to be Jean Valjean. Valjean, still under the name Madeleine, confesses his true identity at the trial in order to save the man.|
|Young Cosette||treble||The eight-year-old daughter of Fantine. Cosette is in the care of the Thénardiers who are paid by Fantine to take care of her child. Unknown to Fantine, the Thénardiers force Cosette to work, and they use Fantine's money for their own needs.|
|Madame Thénardier||contralto||Thénardier's unscrupulous wife.|
|Young Éponine||silent||Eight-year-old Éponine is the pampered daughter of the Thénardiers. She grows up with Cosette and is unkind to her.|
|Thénardier||comic baritone||A second-rate thief, Thénardier runs a small inn.|
|Gavroche||boy soprano||Gavroche is a streetwise urchin who dies on the barricade helping the revolutionaries. He is actually the abandoned son of the Thénardiers, though this is not mentioned in the musical.|
|Enjolras||baritone or tenor||Enjolras is the leader of the student revolutionaries and a friend of Marius.|
|Marius Pontmercy||baritone or tenor||Marius, a student revolutionary, is friends with Éponine, but falls in love with Cosette, and she with him. He is later rescued from the barricades by Valjean, who ultimately gives Marius and Cosette his blessing, allowing them to be married.|
|Éponine||mezzo-soprano||Daughter of the Thénardiers, Éponine, now ragged and a waif, secretly loves Marius. She is killed while returning to the barricades to see Marius. In the end she appears as a spirit alongside Fantine and they guide the dying Valjean to Heaven.|
|Brujon||baritone or tenor||The brutish and cowardly but dissatisfied member of Thénardier's Gang, Brujon's role in the musical expands to cover Gueulemer.|
|Babet||baritone or tenor||A foreboding member of Thénardier's Gang.|
|Claquesous||baritone or tenor||Quiet and masked, expert at evading the police, Claquesous might in fact be working for the law.|
|Montparnasse||baritone or tenor||A young member of Thénardier's Gang, Montparnasse a handsome man appears to be close to Éponine.|
|Cosette||soprano||Cosette, the daughter of Fantine, has grown-up to become a beautiful young woman of culture and privilege under Valjean's adoptive and loving fatherly care and protection. She falls in love with Marius, and he returns her equally strong and pure romantic feelings. She marries him at the end of the musical.|
|Friends of the ABC||baritone or tenor||Student revolutionaries who lead a revolution and die in the process, the Friends of the ABC become martyrs for the rights of citizens. (See Members listed below)|
|Combeferre||baritone or tenor||Combeferre is the philosopher of the ABC group. Enjolras' second-in-command. He is described as the guide of the Friends of the ABC.|
|Feuilly||baritone or tenor||Feuilly is the only member of the Friends of the ABC who is not a student; he is a workingman. An optimist who stands as a sort of ambassador for the "outside," while the rest of the men stand for France. He loves Poland very much.|
|Courfeyrac||baritone or tenor||Friendly and open, Courfeyrac introduces Marius to the ABC society in the novel. He always has many mistresses, and is described as the centre of the Friends of the ABC, always giving off warmth.|
|Joly||baritone or tenor||A medical student and a hypochondriac; best friends with Lesgles.|
|Grantaire||baritone or tenor||Grantaire is a member of the Friends of the ABC. Though he admires Enjolras and is one of his truest friends, Grantaire often opposes Enjolras' fierce determination and occasionally acts as a voice of reason. Grantaire is also very close to Gavroche and attempts to act as his protector. Grantaire has a weakness for spirits of the alcoholic kind and is often tipsy throughout the musical, carrying a bottle of wine wherever he goes.|
|Jean Prouvaire||baritone or tenor||Prouvaire is the youngest student member of the Friends. He is a poet and embodies the Romantic Era. He affects the medieval spelling "Jehan" and grows flowers. Jean Prouvaire has the honor of waving the giant red flag during "One Day More" at the end of Act One.|
|Lesgles||baritone or tenor||Best friends with Joly. A very unlucky man, but also a very happy one.|
|Character||Original French Stage Cast (1980)||Original London Cast (1985)||Original Broadway Cast (1987)||Current London Cast|
|Jean Valjean||Maurice Barrier||Colm Wilkinson||Geronimo Rauch|
|Javert||Jean Vallée||Roger Allam||Terrence Mann||Tam Mutu|
|Fantine||Rose Laurens||Patti LuPone||Randy Graff||Celinde Schoenmaker|
|Éponine||Marianne Mille||Frances Ruffelle||Danielle Hope|
|Thénardier||Yvan Dautin||Alun Armstrong||Leo Burmester||Cameron Blakely|
|Madame Thénardier||Marie-France Roussel||Susan Jane Tanner||Jennifer Butt||Vicky Entwistle|
|Marius||Gilles Buhlmann||Michael Ball||David Bryant||Jamie Ward|
|Cosette||Fabienne Guyon||Rebecca Caine||Judy Kuhn||Samantha Dorsey|
|Enjolras||Christian Ratellin||David Burt||Michael Maguire||Christopher Jacobsen|
Original French production 
French songwriter Alain Boublil had the idea to adapt Victor Hugo's novel into a musical while at a performance of the musical Oliver! in London:
As soon as the Artful Dodger came onstage, Gavroche came to mind. It was like a blow to the solar plexus. I started seeing all the characters of Victor Hugo's Les Misérables—Valjean, Javert, Gavroche, Cosette, Marius, and Éponine—in my mind's eye, laughing, crying, and singing onstage.
He pitched the idea to French composer Claude-Michel Schönberg, and the two developed a rough synopsis. They worked up an analysis of each character's mental and emotional state, as well as that of an audience. Schönberg then began to write the music, while Alain Boublil began work on the text. According to Alain Boublil, "...I could begin work on the words. This I did—after myself deciding on the subject and title of every song—in collaboration with my friend, poet Jean-Marc Natel." Two years later, a two-hour demo tape with Schönberg accompanying himself on the piano and singing every role was completed. An album of this collaboration was recorded at CTS Studios in Wembley and was released in 1980, selling 260,000 copies.
The concept album includes Maurice Barrier as Jean Valjean, Jacques Mercier as Javert, Rose Laurens as Fantine, Yvan Dautin as Thénardier, Marie-France Roussel as Mme. Thénardier, Richard Dewitte as Marius, Fabienne Guyon as Cosette, Marie-France Dufour as Éponine, Michel Sardou as Enjolras, Fabrice Bernard as Gavroche, Maryse Cédolin as Young Cosette, Claude-Michel Schönberg as Courfeyrac, Salvatore Adamo as Combeferre, Michel Delpech as Feuilly, Dominique Tirmont as M. Gillenormand, and Mireille as the hair buyer.
That year, in September 1980, a stage version directed by veteran French film director Robert Hossein was produced at the Palais des Sports in Paris. The show was a success, with 100 performances seen by over 500,000 people.
Most of the cast from the concept album performed in the production. The cast included Maurice Barrier as Valjean, Jean Vallée as Javert, Rose Laurens as Fantine, Maryse Cédolin and Sylvie Camacho and Priscilla Patron as Young Cosette, Marie-France Roussel as Mme. Thénardier, Yvan Dautin as M. Thénardier, Florence Davis and Fabrice Ploquin and Cyrille Dupont as Gavroche, Marianne Mille as Éponine, Gilles Buhlmann as Marius, Christian Ratellin as Enjolras, Fabienne Guyon as Cosette, René-Louis Baron as Combeferre, Dominique Tirmont as M. Gillenormand, Anne Forrez as Mlle. Gillenormand, and Claude Reva as the storyteller.
Original West End production 
The English language version, with lyrics by Herbert Kretzmer and additional material by James Fenton, was substantially expanded and reworked from a literal translation by Siobhan Bracke of the original Paris version, in particular adding a prologue to tell Jean Valjean's backstory. Kretzmer's work is not a direct "translation" of the French, a term that Kretzmer refused to use. A third of the English lyrics were a "rough" translation, another third were adapted from the French lyrics and the final third consisted of new material. The majority is performed in recitative style; the vocalists use natural speech delivery, not musical metrics.
The first production in English, produced by Cameron Mackintosh and adapted and directed by Trevor Nunn and John Caird, opened on 8 October 1985 (five years after the original production) at the Barbican Arts Centre, London. It was billed in the RSC Barbican Theatre programme as "The Royal Shakespeare Company presentation of the RSC/Cameron Mackintosh production", and played to preview performances beginning on 28 September 1985.
The set was designed by John Napier, costumes by Andreane Neofitou and lighting by David Hersey. Musical supervision and orchestrations were by John Cameron, who had been involved with the show since Claude-Michel and Alain hired him to orchestrate the original French concept album. Musical staging was by Kate Flatt with musical direction by Martin Koch.
The original London cast included Colm Wilkinson as Jean Valjean, Roger Allam as Javert, Ken Caswell as the Bishop of Digne, Patti LuPone as Fantine, Zoë Hart, Jayne O'Mahony and Joanne Woodcock as Young Cosette, Danielle Akers, Gillian Brander and Juliette Caton as Young Éponine, Susan Jane Tanner as Madame Thénardier, Alun Armstrong as Thénardier, Frances Ruffelle as Éponine, Rebecca Caine as Cosette, Michael Ball as Marius, David Burt as Enjolras, with Ian Tucker, Oliver Spencer and Liza Hayden sharing the role of Gavroche.
On 4 December 1985, the show transferred to the Palace Theatre, London and moved again on 3 April 2004, to the much more intimate Queen's Theatre, with some revisions of staging and where, as of January 2013[update], it was still playing. It celebrated its ten-thousandth performance on 5 January 2010. The drummer from the original cast album, Peter Boita, stayed with the show for the first 25 years of its history.
The co-production has generated valuable income for the Royal Shakespeare Company.
Original Broadway production 
The musical then premiered on Broadway on March 12, 1987 at The Broadway Theatre. Colm Wilkinson and Frances Ruffelle reprised their roles from the London production. The $4.5 million production had a more than $4 million advance sale prior to its New York opening.
The show underwent further tightening and an improved sewer lighting and Javert suicide scene effect was incorporated. Boublil explained: "The transfer from London to the United States has prompted further modifications. 'We are taking this opportunity to rethink and perfect, to rewrite some details which probably no one else will see, but which for us are still long nights of work,' Mr. Boublil says. 'There are things that nobody had time to do in London, and here we have a wonderful opportunity to fix a few things. No one will notice, perhaps, but for us, it will make us so happy if we can better this show. We would like this to be the final version.'" Two songs were deleted—the complete version of Gavroche's song "Little People" and the adult Cosette's "I Saw Him Once". A short section at the beginning of "In My Life" replaced "I Saw Him Once". The lyrics in Javert's "Stars" were changed. It now ended with the line, "This I swear by the stars!", while the London production and cast recording ended with the repeated line, "Keeping watch in the night".
The original Broadway cast included Colm Wilkinson as Jean Valjean, David Bryant as Marius, Judy Kuhn as Cosette, Michael Maguire as Enjolras, Frances Ruffelle as Éponine, Braden Danner as Gavroche, Donna Vivino as Young Cosette, Jennifer Butt as Madame Thénardier, Leo Burmester as Thénardier, Randy Graff as Fantine, Terrence Mann as Javert, Chrissie McDonald as Young Éponine, and Norman Large as the Bishop of Digne.
Other members of the original Broadway cast included Kevin Marcum, Paul Harman, Anthony Crivello, John Dewar, Joseph Kolinski, Alex Santoriello, Jesse Corti, Susan Goodman, John Norman, Norman Large, Marcus Lovett, Steve Shocket, Cindy Benson, Marcie Shaw, Jane Bodle, Joanna Glushak, Ann Crumb, Kelli James, Gretchen Kingsley-Weihe, Chrissie McDonald. Michael Hinton was the original drummer and credited on the cast album.
The musical ran at the Broadway Theatre through October 10, 1990, when it moved to the Imperial Theatre. It was scheduled to close on March 15, 2003, but the closing was postponed by a surge in public interest. According to an article in The Scotsman, "Sales picked up last October, when Sir Cameron made the announcement that the show would be closing on March 15th...its closure postponed to May 18th because of an unexpected increase in business." After 6,680 performances in sixteen years, when it closed on May 18, 2003, it was the second-longest-running Broadway musical after Cats. It was surpassed by The Phantom of the Opera, in 2006.
This Broadway production of Les Misérables and its advertising in New York City is a reoccurring theme in American Psycho. The reviewer for the Financial Times wrote that Les Misérables is "the book's hilarious main cultural compass-point".
2006 Broadway revival 
Only three years after the original run closed, Les Misérables began a return to Broadway on 9 November 2006 at the Broadhurst Theatre for a limited run that was subsequently made open-ended.
Using the set, costumes, performers, and other resources from the recently closed third US national touring production, the production was only slightly altered. Minor changes included colourful projections blended into its existing lighting design, and a proscenium that extended out into the first two boxes on either side of the stage.
Some cuts made to the show's prologue during its original Broadway run were restored, lyrics for Gavroche's death scene (known in the revival as "Ten Little Bullets") cut during the development of the original London production were restored, and much of the show was re-orchestrated by Christopher Jahnke, introducing a snare and timpani-heavy sound played by a 14 member band, a reduction of about 8 musicians from the original production's 22 musician orchestration.
The original 2006 Broadway revival cast included Alexander Gemignani as Jean Valjean, Norm Lewis as Javert, Daphne Rubin-Vega as Fantine, Celia Keenan-Bolger as Éponine, Aaron Lazar as Enjolras, Adam Jacobs as Marius, Ali Ewoldt as Cosette, Gary Beach as Thénardier, Jenny Galloway as Madame Thénardier, Brian D’Addario and Jacob Levine and Skye Rainforth and Austyn Myers as Gavroche, James Chip Leonard as The Bishop of Digne, Drew Sarich as Grantaire, and Tess Adams and Kylie Liya Goldstein and Carly Rose Sonenclar as Young Cosette/Young Éponine.
Lea Salonga, who previously played the role of Éponine, replaced Rubin-Vega as Fantine beginning on 2 March 2007. Zach Rand replaced Jacob Levine as Gavroche on 15 March 2007. Ann Harada replaced Jenny Galloway as Mme. Thénardier on 24 April 2007. Ben Davis joined playing Javert, and Max von Essen playing Enjolras. Ben Crawford and Mandy Bruno joined the cast that day too, playing Brujon and Éponine respectively. On 23 July 2007, Drew Sarich took over the role of Jean Valjean, following Alexander Gemignani's departure. On 5 September 2007, it was announced that John Owen-Jones (who played Valjean in London) was to join the Broadway cast. In return, Sarich would join the London cast in Owen-Jones' place. Judy Kuhn, who originated the role of Cosette, returned to the show after twenty years as Fantine, succeeding Lea Salonga.
The revival closed on 6 January 2008. Combined with the original production's 6,680 performances, Les Misérables has played 7,176 performances on Broadway.
2013 Toronto revival 
A sit down production will play at the Princess of Wales Theatre in Toronto, Canada in fall of 2013. Laurence Olivier Award nominee, Ramin Karimloo, will star as Jean Valjean. He will be joined by fellow West End star, Earl Carpenter, who will reprise the role of Inspector Javert. Other cast members include Genevieve Leclerc as Fantine, Samantha Hill as Cosette, Melissa O'Neil as Eponine, Cliff Saunders as Monsieur Thenardier, Lisa Horner as Madame Thenardier, and Mark Uhre as Enjolras.
2014 Broadway revival 
The show is set to return on Broadway in March 2014 at a Shubert-owned theater. The creative team includes the direction of Laurence Connor and James Powell, the set design by Matt Kinley, costumes by Andreane Neofitou and Christine Rowlands, lighting by Paule Constable, sound by Mick Potter and projections by Fifty-Nine Productions. Casting is unknown. Cameron Mackintosh will be producing once again and Alfie Boe, who played Jean Valjean in the 25th Anniversary Concert, is reportedly in talks of reprising his role in the 2014 revival.
Concert productions 
10th Anniversary Concert 
On 8 October 1995, the show celebrated its tenth anniversary with a concert at the Royal Albert Hall. This 10th Anniversary Concert was nearly "complete," missing only a handful of scenes, including "The Death of Gavroche" and the confrontation between Marius and the Thénardiers at the wedding feast. Sir Cameron Mackintosh hand-selected the cast, which became known as the Les Misérables Dream Cast, assembled from around the world, and engaged the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra. The concert concluded with seventeen Valjeans from various international productions singing, "Do You Hear the People Sing?" in their native languages. The concert cast included Colm Wilkinson as Jean Valjean, Philip Quast as Javert, Paul Monaghan as the Bishop of Digne, Ruthie Henshall as Fantine, Hannah Chick as Young Cosette, Jenny Galloway as Madame Thénardier, Alun Armstrong as Thénardier, Adam Searles as Gavroche, Michael Maguire as Enjolras, Michael Ball as Marius, Judy Kuhn as Cosette, Lea Salonga as Éponine, and Anthony Crivello as Grantaire. The concert was staged by Ken Caswell and conducted by David Charles Abell.
25th Anniversary Concert 
The 25th Anniversary Concert of Les Misérables was held at The O2 in North Greenwich on Sunday, 3 October 2010 at 1:30 pm and 7:00 pm.
It featured Alfie Boe as Jean Valjean, Norm Lewis as Javert, Lea Salonga as Fantine, Nick Jonas as Marius, Katie Hall as Cosette, Jenny Galloway as Madame Thénardier, Ramin Karimloo as Enjolras, Samantha Barks as Éponine, Matt Lucas as Thénardier, Mia Jenkins as Young Cosette, Robert Madge as Gavroche and Earl Carpenter as the Bishop of Digne. (Originally, Camilla Kerslake had been selected to perform as Cosette, however she was unable to attend. Katie Hall was selected in her place. Hall had previously acted the role at the Queen's Theatre from 2009 and in the 25th Anniversary Tour production at the Barbican.) Casts of the current London, international tour, original 1985 London, and several school productions took part, comprising an ensemble of three hundred performers and musicians. The concert was directed by Laurence Connor & James Powell and conducted by David Charles Abell.
Other concert performances 
The musical has also been performed in concert at Cardiff Castle and several venues in southern England, produced by Earl Carpenter Concerts. A concert version starring Jeff Leyton was also performed at the Odyssey Arena, Belfast. In 1989, a one-night concert performance was performed at SkyDome, Toronto, and the largest concert production attracted an audience of approximately 125,000 as part of the Australia Day celebrations in Sydney's Domain Park. The Scandinavian concert tour, produced by Cameron Mackintosh in association with Noble Art, starred Danish musical icon Stig Rossen in the leading role and commemorated author Victor Hugo's 200th birthday. Venues on the tour included the Stockholm Globe Arena, Oslo Spektrum, the Helsinki Hartwell Areena, and the Gothenburg Scandinavium, with audiences totalling over 150,000 for the complete tour.
In November 2004, to celebrate the centennial of the Entente Cordiale, the Queen invited the cast of Les Miserables in the West End to perform for French President Jacques Chirac at Windsor Castle. It was the first time the cast of a West End musical had performed at a Royal residence. The cast was the same as in the West End, supplemented by several guest singers and a choir of former performers. The part of Jean Valjean was played by Michael Ball – the original 1985 London and 1995 Dream Cast Marius - and the part of Javert was played by Michael McCarthy.
In February 2008, Les Misérables was performed at the Bournemouth International Centre, England with a cast of West End stars accompanied by the Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra. In August 2008, a concert version, directed by Richard Jay-Alexander, was performed at the Hollywood Bowl. The cast included veteran Les Misérables star J. Mark McVey as Valjean, The Office star Melora Hardin as Fantine, Broadway star and Bowl veteran Brian Stokes Mitchell as Javert, Spring Awakening and Glee star Lea Michele as Éponine, Tony-winning Jersey Boys star John Lloyd Young as Marius, West End star Tom Lowe as Enjolras, Michael McCormick as Thénardier, Ruth Williamson as Madame Thénardier, Michele Maika as Cosette, Maddie Levy as Young Cosette, and Sage Ryan as Gavroche.
In September 2008, it was performed at the St John Loveridge Hall in Guernsey with a cast of West End performers—the first time that it had been professionally performed on the Island where Victor Hugo wrote the novel. Former London Valjean Phil Cavill reprised his role alongside Les Misérables veteran Michael McCarthy as Javert. In March 2009, the Guernsey production was remounted at Fort Regent in Jersey; and in July 2009, the musical was performed in concert at Osborne House on the Isle of Wight.
Touring Productions 
National US Tours of the Original Broadway Production 
The show had three national touring companies of the original Broadway production in the US, all of which shared the Broadway producer and manager, creative teams, as well nearly identical sets, costumes, and lighting. While the touring production and the New York production were running simultaneously, the staff, cast members, crew, and musicians of the two productions interchanged often, which contributed to keeping both companies of the show in form. When the New York production closed in 2003, the Third National Tour continued for another three years, and enjoyed the influx of many members from the original and subsequent New York companies.
The First National Tour opened at Boston's Shubert Theatre on 12 December 1987, and continued to play major cities until late 1991. The Second National Tour (called "The Fantine Company") opened at Los Angeles' Shubert Theatre on 1 June 1988. The production played for fourteen months then transferred to San Francisco's Curran Theatre where it enjoyed a similar run. The Third National Tour of Les Misérables (called "The Marius Company") was one of the longest running American touring musical productions. Opening on 28 November 1988, at the Tampa Bay Performing Arts Center in Florida, and closing on 23 July 2006, at the Fox Theatre in St. Louis, Missouri, the tour ran for seventeen years and 7,061 performances. The tour played in 145 cities in 43 states. The same touring company also frequently performed in Canada, made a 1994 diversion to Singapore, and another diversion in 2002 to be the first Western musical production to visit China, opening in Shanghai's Grand Theatre for a three week engagement.
All US productions (including Broadway and its revival) were visually identical in scale and design but the third national tour was notable for its portability without sacrificing the Broadway-caliber experience. Thanks to innovative touring techniques borrowed from the pop/rock concert industry, the 4.5 million dollar production was adaptable to smaller and larger venues and traveled complete in all of 8 semi tractor trailers. It was set up and ready to go in less than 24 hours and broken down and packed up in about 16 hours. This allowed it to reach many cities and venues in its acclaimed, original Broadway form.
The final company of the Third National Broadway Tour included Randal Keith as Valjean (Keith also played Valjean in the final company of the original Broadway engagement), Robert Hunt as Javert, Joan Almedilla as Fantine, Daniel Bogart as Marius, Norman Large (from Original Broadway Cast) as Monsieur Thénardier, Jennifer Butt (from Original Broadway Cast) as Madame Thénardier, Melissa Lyons as Éponine, Ali Ewoldt as Cosette, Victor Wallace as Enjolras, Meg Guzulescu and Rachel Schier alternating as Young Cosette and Young Éponine, and Austyn Myers and Anthony Skillman alternating as Gavroche.
25th Anniversary National US Tour 
In the fall of 2010, a new US tour company embarked on a national tour presented by Broadway Across America to celebrate the 25th anniversary of the show. The tour had its opening on 19 November 2010 at the Paper Mill Playhouse in Millburn, New Jersey, running until 19 December 2010. This newly envisioned production features new set/lighting designs and new direction which doesn't use a revolve. It has different and slimmer orchestrations by three additional orchestrators based on John Cameron's original work. This tour originally starred Lawrence Clayton as Valjean, Andrew Varela as Javert, Betsy Morgan as Fantine, Jenny Latimer as Cosette, Justin Scott Brown as Marius, Chasten Harmon as Éponine, Michael Kostroff as Thénardier, Shawna Hamic as Madame Thénardier, Jeremy Hays as Enjolras, Josh Caggiano and Ethan Paul Khusidman as Gavroche, Maya Jade Frank and Juliana Simone alternating as Young Cosette and Young Éponine. J. Mark McVey's daughter, Kylie McVey was the understudy for Young Cosette and Young Éponine. Clayton left the tour in April 2011. Ron Sharpe later took over as Valjean until June 2011. J. Mark McVey was then Valjean, but McVey and his daughter left the tour on 1 April 2012. Peter Lockyer replaces him as Valjean. Betsy Morgan left the tour on December 2, 2012. She was replaced by Genevieve Leclerc. The tour is scheduled to run through 2012, though it is expected to run until 2013 as more cities are added. The tour is currently[when?] one of six US national Broadway tours that are grossing over $1,000,000 per week.
25th Anniversary International Tour 
A tour to commemorate the 25th anniversary of the show began performances on 12 December 2009, at the Wales Millennium Centre in Cardiff. Differences from the original production included a new set, new costumes, new direction and alterations to the original orchestrations. The tour also did not use a revolving stage and the scenery was inspired by the paintings of Victor Hugo. Locations have included Manchester, Norwich, Birmingham, Edinburgh, Bristol, Salford, and Southampton. The tour also played a special engagement in Paris. From September through October, the show returned to the Barbican Centre, London, site of the original 1985 production. The tour cast featured John Owen-Jones as Valjean, Earl Carpenter as Javert, Gareth Gates as Marius, Ashley Artus as Thénardier, Lynne Wilmot as Madame Thénardier, Madalena Alberto as Fantine, Rosalind James as Éponine, Jon Robyns as Enjolras, Katie Hall as Cosette, and David Lawrence as the Bishop of Digne. The tour ended 2 October 2010, at the Barbican.
Since its UK premiere, several international productions based on the 25th Anniversary Tour has been staged in different countries, including Spain, US, South Korea and Japan.
International productions 
The show has been produced in forty-two countries and translated into 21 languages: English, French, German (Austria and Germany), Spanish (four versions: two from Spain, one version each from Argentina and Mexico), Japanese, Hebrew, Hungarian, Icelandic, Norwegian (Bokmål and Nynorsk), Polish, Swedish (in Sweden and in Finland), Dutch (Netherlands and Belgium), Danish, Finnish, Brazilian Portuguese, Estonian, Czech, Mauritian Creole, Basque, Catalan and Korean. Including singles and promos, there have been over seventy official recordings from worldwide productions.
Interestingly, the stage show, which had changed so significantly since its Parisian conception as a stadium concert in 1980, was only finally translated back into the language of Victor Hugo for its French World Première in Montreal, Quebec, Canada, in 1991. This production, which in fact boasted a cast that presented five shows a week in French and three a week in English, was a great success. It gave the producers a clear indication that Les Misérables was finally ready to go "home", to Paris, later that same year.
Regional productions 
In 1997, the Royal Shakespeare Company performed at the Colonial Theatre in Boston, Massachusetts. The production starred Gregory Calvin Stone (Jean Valjean), Rich Affannato (Marius), Lisa Capps (Fantine), J.P. Dougherty (Monsieur Thenardier), Rona Figueroa (Éponine), Kate Fisher (Cosette), Brian Herriott (Enjolras), Todd Alan Johnson (Javert), and Tregoney Shepherd (Madame Thenardier).
The USAREUR Roadside Theater in Heidelberg, Germany hosted the American Community Theater World Premiere of Les Misérables. The premiere took place 11 May 2001 and closed on 10 June 2001. Beginning in 2007, a limited number of regional productions (five in the US, two in Canada) of Les Misérables have been staged. The California Musical Theatre (CMT) (Sacramento, California) in its Music Circus summer series (production ran from 10 July through 22 July 2007) staged the show as theater in the round. Glenn Casale, choreographed by Bob Richard, with music directed by Andrew Bryan, directed the production that featured Ivan Rutherford who gave over one thousand eight hundred performances as Jean Valjean on Broadway as well as performing in the Tenth Anniversary Company.
Other regional productions of Les Misérables include the Pioneer Theatre Company (PTC) of Salt Lake City which was the first regional production. This production ran from 27 April to 7 July 2007, making it the longest-running production in PTC's history. It was directed by PTC artistic director Charles Morey and brought both William Solo as Jean Valjean and Merwin Foard as Inspector Javert to PTC, reprising roles both men played previously on Broadway.
The first independent regional theatre production of the musical in Canada was directed by Linda Moore at the Neptune Theatre in Halifax, Nova Scotia, starring Frank Mackay as Jean Valjean in 1994.
An outdoor production played at The Muny, the nation's oldest and largest outdoor theatre, which seats 12,000 people. The theatre is located in Saint Louis, Missouri. Directed by Fred Hanson, Les Misérables was the final production of the Muny's 89th season, playing 6–15 August 2007. Ivan Rutherford, who was a Valjean in the original Broadway production, reprised his role in the production. Kevin Kern and Diana Kaarina, who played Marius and Éponine in the closing cast of the original Broadway production, reprised their roles.
In September 2008, a mini-tour produced by Atlanta's Theater of the Stars played Eisenhower Hall at the United States Military Academy, in West Point, New York; the Filene Center at the Wolf Trap National Park for the Performing Arts in Vienna, Virginia; Kansas City Starlight Theatre; and the Fox Theater in Atlanta. The show featured a new set of original pictures painted by Victor Hugo himself. Robert Evan played Valjean, returning to the role he played in the mid-nineties on Broadway. Also featured were Nikki Rene Daniels as Fantine and Robert Hunt as Javert, both reprising their roles from the Broadway revival. Fred Hanson directed the production. The creative team included Matt Kinley as Scenic Designer, Ken Billington as Lighting Designer, Peter Fitzgerald and Erich Bechtel as Sound Designers, Zachary Borovay as Projection Designer, and Dan Riddle as Musical Director and Conductor.
In 2008, the Signature Theatre in Arlington, Virginia staged a small venue "black box" version of the play. Signature received Mackintosh's special permission for the production: "One of the great pleasures of being involved with the creation of Les Misérables is seeing this marvelous musical being done in a completely different and original way. Having seen many shows brilliantly reimagined at Signature I have no doubt that Eric and his team will come up with a revolutionary new take on Les Miz unlike anything anyone has seen before. Viva la différence!" The production officially opened on 14 December 2008 (after previews from 2 December), and ran through 22 February 2009 (extended from 25 January 2009).
Northern Stage, a regional theatre company in White River Junction, Vermont, also staged a production on a small stage, in December 2008; in their case, it was a three-quarter-thrust stage in a 245-seat house. This production featured Timothy Shew as Jean Valjean, Mary Gutzi as Madame Thénardier and Kevin David Thomas as Marius, all of whom appeared in the Broadway production (where Shew starred as Valjean, Gutzi as Fantine and Thomas as Marius). The production also featured Broadway veterans Dan Sharkey (The Music Man) and David DeWitt (Phantom of the Opera). Northern Stage Artistic Director Brooke Ciardelli directed the production.
In July 2009, the Pittsburgh Civic Light Opera (CLO) staged Les Misérables as part of their summer show collection.
In May 2012, the Calpe Rooke Band staged Les Misérables based on the 10th anniversary version in St Michael's Cave. The show was made up of local singers and musicians. It was expected to last for over two hours. Tickets for the event sold out within three days of going on sale.
In March 2013, Cumberland County Playhouse in Crossville, Tennessee launched a full production of Les Mis shortly after the last national tour closed and the property was released for regional professional theaters. The production featured Nathaniel Hackman, who performed in the 2012 national tour. The Cumberland County Playhouse production opened on March 9, 2013 and closed on May 3, 2013 after 33 scheduled performances.
Les Misérables school edition 
The school edition cuts a considerable amount of material from the original show. It is divided into thirty scenes and, although no "critical" scenes or songs have been removed, it runs 25–30 minutes shorter than the "official" version making the total running time about 2 ½ hours. A few subtle changes of vocal pitch have been made: "What Have I Done?", Valjean's Soliloquy, "Stars" by Javert, "A Little Fall of Rain" by Éponine and Marius, "Turning", and "Castle on a Cloud" lose a verse each. During "Fantine's Arrest" Bamatabois loses two verses. The song "Fantine's Death/Confrontation" is edited, and the counterpoint duel between Javert and Valjean is lost, as well as a verse by Fantine. "Dog Eats Dog" by Thénardier is heavily truncated. "Beggars at the Feast", is shortened, with Thénardier losing a verse, and the song before it, "Wedding Chorale", is excluded entirely although the rest of the wedding remains in place. Also, the drinker's introduction to "Master of the House" is cut completely.
After The King's Theatre, The King's School and Tara Anglican School for Girls, in Sydney, Australia, gained rights for the full production in late 2000 from Cameron Mackintosh to perform the show. Music Theatre International developed a school version, available only to productions with an entirely amateur cast aged under 19. Hundreds of schools worldwide have purchased the rights and staged performances, and it was the best-selling production for high schools in the year 2006.
In November 2001, Harry S Truman High School in Levittown, Pennsylvania piloted the school version under director Lou Volpe. Cameron Mackintosh attended closing night of the performance and shared how impressed he was with the adaptation. The show was met with rave reviews.
In October 2002, Stanwell School in Penarth, South Wales was chosen by Cameron Mackintosh to be first school in Europe to perform this version of the production. The show was set to coincide with the International Festival of Musical Theatre. The gala performance was attended by Cameron Mackintosh and a week long run was met with critical acclaim.
In one of Ghana's (West Africa) most prestigious schools a recent performance by the Ghana International School students was possibly one of the best plays adapted in West Africa to date said by not only local but by international fim critics.
Film adaptation 
Although numerous films of the Les Misérables story have been made, no film adaptation of the stage musical was produced for many years. A film adaptation has been in development several times since the late 1980s. Alan Parker was reported to be connected to an adaptation at an early stage. In 1992 Mackintosh announced planning for a film to be directed by Bruce Beresford and co-produced by Tri-Star Pictures, but the project was later abandoned.
The 2010 DVD/Blu-ray release of Les Misérables: 25th Anniversary Concert included an announcement of revised plans for a film adaptation which was later confirmed by Mackintosh. Tom Hooper signed on in March 2011 to direct the Mackintosh-produced film from a screenplay by William Nicholson. In June 2011, Working Title Films and Mackintosh announced that the film would begin principal photography in early 2012 for a tentative December release date. The film was given its general US release on Christmas Day 2012. Principal cast members include Hugh Jackman as Jean Valjean, Russell Crowe as Javert, Anne Hathaway as Fantine, Amanda Seyfried as Cosette, Eddie Redmayne as Marius Pontmercy, Samantha Barks as Éponine, and Sacha Baron Cohen and Helena Bonham Carter as the Thénardiers. Other notable actors who played roles in the film include Aaron Tveit as Enjolras, Bertie Carvel as Bamatabois, Colm Wilkinson as the Bishop of Digne and Frances Ruffelle as prostitute.
Cast recordings 
The following recordings of Les Misérables are available in English: the Original London Cast, the Original Broadway Cast, the Complete Symphonic Recording, the 10th Anniversary London Concert, The 25th Anniversary UK Tour Cast and the 25th Anniversary London Concert.
Original London Cast recording 
The Original London Cast recording was the first English language album of the musical. Recorded in 1985, when the show premiered, it is closest to the original French concept album. For example, "Stars" appears before "Look Down" and shortly after, the original version of "Little People" plays, which was later incorporated into the revealing of Javert. It also features a song entitled "I Saw Him Once", sung by Cosette, which was later incorporated into the first part of "In My Life". The album has sold 887,000 copies in the US.
The cast includes Colm Wilkinson as Valjean, Roger Allam as Javert, Patti LuPone as Fantine, Alun Armstrong as Thénardier, Susan Jane Tanner as Mme. Thénardier, Frances Ruffelle as Éponine, Ian Tucker as Gavroche, Michael Ball as Marius, David Burt as Enjolras, and Rebecca Caine as Cosette.
Original Broadway Cast recording 
The Original Broadway Cast recording was produced in 1987. It included several changes to the songs that are still evident in today's performances. As with its predecessor, it is incomplete, and leaves out songs or parts that are more important narratively than musically (e.g., "Fantine's Arrest", "The Runaway Cart", "The Final Battle"). The album has sold 1,596,000 copies in the US.
The cast includes Colm Wilkinson as Valjean, Terrence Mann as Javert, Randy Graff as Fantine, Leo Burmester as Thénardier, Jennifer Butt as Madame Thénardier, Frances Ruffelle as Éponine, Braden Danner as Gavroche, David Bryant as Marius, Judy Kuhn as Cosette, Michael Maguire as Enjolras, and Donna Vivino as Young Cosette.
Complete Symphonic Recording 
Recorded in 1988 and released in 1989, the Complete Symphonic Recording features the entire score. (The Czech Revival Recording is the only other album, in any language, to feature the entire score; on the other hand, the four 2003 Japanese recordings feature the entire score after the cuts first made on Broadway at the end of 2000.) Cameron Mackintosh's original plan was to use the Australian cast, but the scope was expanded to create an international cast featuring performers from the major performances of the musical. The cast was recorded in three different places.
The album, produced by David Caddick and conducted by Martin Koch, won the Best Musical Cast Show Album Grammy Award in 1991. The cast includes Gary Morris as Valjean, Philip Quast as Javert, Debra Byrne as Fantine, Gay Soper as Mme. Thénardier, Barry James as Thénardier, Kaho Shimada as Éponine, Michael Ball as Marius, Anthony Warlow as Enjolras, and Tracy Shayne as Cosette.
10th Anniversary Concert 
The 10th Anniversary recording was of a concert version of Les Misérables, performed at the Royal Albert Hall in October 1995, featuring full orchestra and choir. All the parts were sung live, giving the performance a different mood from other recordings. The score was recorded consecutively without pauses or multiple recordings. The concert's encores are also included. As with the original recordings; however, they differed from those missing from the original (e.g., those vital to plot such as "Fantine's Arrest" and "The Runaway Cart" were kept, while unnecessary or complex songs, such as "At the Barricade", were left out).
The cast includes Colm Wilkinson as Valjean, Philip Quast as Javert, Ruthie Henshall as Fantine, Alun Armstrong as Thénardier, Jenny Galloway as Mme. Thénardier, Lea Salonga as Éponine, Adam Searles as Gavroche, Hannah Chick as Young Cosette, Michael Ball as Marius, Michael Maguire as Enjolras, Judy Kuhn as Cosette and Anthony Crivello as Grantaire.
Manchester Highlights 
A five-track album featuring members of the UK national tour was released in 1992 and includes "I Dreamed a Dream" (Ria Jones); "Stars" (Philip Quast); "On My Own" (Meredith Braun); "Bring Him Home" (Jeff Leyton); and "Empty Chairs at Empty Tables" (Mike Sterling). The version of "Stars" is the same as that on the Complete Symphonic Recording.
25th Anniversary UK Tour Cast 
Recorded live at the Palace Theatre in Manchester, this recording was released to commemorate 25 years of Les Misérables in English. This recording featured new arrangements and reinspired orchestrations, and included John Owen-Jones as Valjean, Earl Carpenter as Javert, Madalena Alberto as Fantine, Ashley Artus as M. Thénardier, Lynne Wilmot as Mme. Thénardier, Gareth Gates as Marius, Katie Hall as Cosette, Jon Robyns as Enjolras, and Rosalind James as Éponine.
25th Anniversary Concert 
|This section does not cite any references or sources. (March 2011)|
The 25th Anniversary Concert was recorded live at The O2 (London) on 3 October 2010 and is available on DVD in the UK while the Blu-ray was released worldwide. It was shown in select US theaters via NCM Fathom Events. The release for the DVD and Blu-ray in the United States was 22 February 2011 to promote the film adaptation. A CD single of the 'Valjean Quartet' singing "Bring Him Home" was also recorded and released, with proceeds going to the charity "Tickets For Troops." The cast included Alfie Boe as Jean Valjean, Norm Lewis as Javert, Nick Jonas as Marius, Samantha Barks as Éponine, Katie Hall as Cosette, Ramin Karimloo as Enjolras, Lea Salonga as Fantine, Matt Lucas as Monsieur Thénardier and Jenny Galloway as Madame Thénardier.
Other languages 
There are also various non-English language cast albums of the musical.
Awards and nominations 
Original West End production 
|1985||Laurence Olivier Award||Best New Musical||Nominated|
|Best Actor in a Musical||Colm Wilkinson||Nominated|
|Best Actress in a Musical||Patti LuPone||Won|
|2012||Laurence Olivier Award||Audience Award for Most Popular Show||Won|
Original Broadway production 
See also 
- Behr, Edward (1993). The Complete Book of Les Miserables. New York: Arcade Publishing. p. 51. ISBN 978-1-55970-156-3. Retrieved 2011-11-10.
- Billington, Michael. "Twenty-five years on, they ask me if I was wrong about Les Misérables ...". The Guardian Newspaper Online. Retrieved 31 January 2013.
- Kehe, Jason. "Theater Review: "Les Misérables" At The Ahmanson". USC Annenberg. Retrieved 31 January 2013.
- "The Fantasticks website". Retrieved 2012-11-04.
- Craig, Zoe (13 April 2011). "Top 10 Longest-Running London Theatre Shows". londonist.com. Retrieved 2012-11-04.
- Masters, Tim (1 October 2010). "Bon Anniversaire! 25 Facts About Les Mis". BBC News. Retrieved 2011-03-05.
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|Wikimedia Commons has media related to: Les Misérables (musical)|
- Les Misérables at the Internet Broadway Database
- Cameron Mackintosh: Les Misérables (Worldwide)
- Cameron Mackintosh: Les Misérables (Broadway)
- An Archive of Performers from the Original Broadway Run of Les Mis
- An Archive of Performers from the London Run of Les Mis
- Les Miserables London
- Les Mis 25th Anniversary Production running in Barcelona, 2011