I can’t believe I get to do Les Miz. I remember singing this score, or parts of it, at the top of my lungs in the West End of Vancouver. I am sure it irritated the thousands that were forced to listen to my booming voice at all hours of the night. Sorry about that.
This time around though, I have earned the right to sing out. I have been singing all the songs in my head, regardless of who’s solo it is. This score is so triumphant, so epic, that I just can’t help it. You see, for me this was the first show that introduced me to musical theatre, and what it could be. Thus the constant serenade.
I remember walking through the West End, after rehearsal in the park, and talking wildly about musical theatre and all the newest shows. I was someone who really didn’t know the composers or all the playwrights by heart. I was a newbie to this world, and wasn’t really all that excited about musical theatre specifically. I loved plays, film, Shakespearian insights on life, and improv. That is where my learning was focused. Musicals were fluffy, or pedantic, and at the time, I didn’t see the true art inside the genre. I remember going to parties, and people would put on a musical, everyone would start singing, showing off, and I thought, how lame, lets dance, lets flirt, lets talk about life. I was always more interested in human relationships that were real. The musicals that I knew at the time were like children’s fairy tales, lovely and sweet, but not based in any authenticity. That all changed when I heard Les Miserables. Here was a show that was about love, passion, sacrifice, family, loyalty, human rights, responsibility, duty, integrity, and revolution. Holy shit. Yes, the music is dramatic, yes, the story is sweeping and epic, I love it. This show and its ear worm score was the light that I needed to explore the genre. I wanted more.
I have to go now and rehearse. Start a revolution. Die with my comrades with freedom in our hearts. Ha. Awesome.