Witness a record-breaking, global musical phenomenon – the Les Misérables musical
Multi-award-winning, smash-hit phenomenon Les Misérables continues to stun London audiences with a record-breaking run of more than 35 years on the West End. With decades of stage time built up across Broadway, Toronto, Europe, Japan and Australia, Les Misérables is arguably the most successful musical to date, featuring a Tony Award-winning score by Alain Boublil and Claude-Michael Schönberg.
Originally opening on the West End in 1985, the Les Misérables musical received a lukewarm response from critics, who dubbed it a huge failure. At the 1985 Olivier Awards, the musical received just one accolade – Best Actress in a Musical for Patti LuPone’s role as Fantine. However, when it opened on Broadway in 1987, it won a slew of Tony Awards including Best Musical, Best Book of a Musical and Best Original Score, and skyrocketed to become the beloved show it is today. Audiences in the 21st century would hardly believe a musical as powerful, moving and iconic as Les Mis had such a polarising start.
In July 2019, the Queen’s Theatre closed for refurbishment and the original production played its last performance. Whilst the theatre was refurbished an all-star concert production opened at the nearby Gielgud Theatre, starring Alfie Boe, Michael Ball, Carrie Hope Fletcher and Matt Lucas. Les Misérables returned to the newly-named Sondheim Theatre in an updated production in December 2019.
The new production, which was developed for the 25th-anniversary touring production in 2009, features direction from James Powell and Laurence Connor, set design by Matt Kinley, lighting by Paule Constable, sound by Mick Potter and costumes by Andreane Neofitou and Christine Rowlands.
Set in late 19th century France, Les Misérables is the timeless tale of love, loss, retribution and redemption at the time of the French revolution. Following the Jean Valjean, a former criminal released from prison, we see him try to shed his ex-convict status and become Mayor, despite being hounded by policeman Javert. Along his way, he meets Fantine, who has turned to prostitution after being fired from working in one of his factories. Upon her deathbed he vows to take care of her daughter Cosette. Soon, Cosette is a grown woman and falls in love with young revolutionary Marius and Valjean is forced to protect his family.
Adapted into an Academy Award-winning 2012 film starring Anne Hathaway, Hugh Jackman and Russell Crowe, the Les Misérables musical continues to be a beloved hit across the world. Over the years, the show has featured many famous faces, with original cast members including Colm Wilkinson, Patti LuPone and Alan Armstrong. Since then, stars such as Phil Davies, Samantha Barks, Norm Lewis, Alfie Boe, Lea Salonga, Rachelle Ann Go, Danielle Hope and Eva Noblezada have all appeared in the award-winning musical, with it often being a role that helped propel them into even greater stardom.
The current Les Misérables musical cast at the Sondheim Theatre includes Josh Piterman as Jean Valjean, Stewart Clarke as Javert, Katie Hall as Fantine, Lulu-Mae Pears as Cosette, Will Callan as Marius, Emina El-Kindy as Éponine, Djavan van de Fliert as Enjolras and Gerard Carey and Claire Machin as Monsieur and Madame Thénardier.
Featuring a hugely memorable score which includes show-stoppers such as “I Dreamed a Dream”, “On my Own”, “One Day More”, “Bring Him Home” and “Empty Chairs at Empty Tables”, this is a musical of epic proportions that has spanned the decades, looking set to continue to be the West End and Broadway’s most successful musical for many years to come.
Boublil and Schönberg‘s Les Misérables musical contains mild adult content and violence which may not be appropriate for young children. The show is recommended for those aged 7 and up, and under 5’s will not be admitted.
Those under 16 must be sat beside an accompanying adult.