Les Miserables, which opened in Minneapolis on December 6th for a two-week run, features amazing sets and excellent singing. However, at 3 hours long, it dragged a bit.
The story is about Jean Valjean, played by J. Mark McVey, who was released after 19 years of slavery during the Revolutionary War in France. After traveling back to where he grew up, he was invited to spend the night with the Bishop of Digne who gave him food and water. Unfortunately, Jean stole all the silver he could get his hands on from the Bishop. Once he was caught the Bishop told the police that he gave Jean the silver, and they should leave him alone. From that moment on, Jean promised to himself that he would turn his life around.
Jean became mayor and a factory owner, where he found Fantine, played by Betsey Morgan, who was working for him. The police saw a letter that Fantine had received about her daughter, and sent to live on the streets. In order to pay for her daughter, Fantine had to sell her hair, her necklace, and become a prostitute. The story intensified when Fantine got in a fight with a customer and was arrested by Javert, played by Andrew Varela. The Mayor heard about the arrest and forced Javert to let her go to the hospital. In the hospital Fantine explained that she can’t have her daughter living with the people taking care of her, so Jean told Fantine he would find her daughter. After finding her, he paid for her and raised her as his own child.
The lighting, tech work, and sets were all fantastic, taking nine semi-trucks to deliver it all! Behind the show there was a moving projection which made the show extremely different and gave the illusion of actual movement. All the set pieces ranged from super tall and detailed, to simple and unique. The play was very well performed.
The whole play was an operetta, which means that there was no dialogue at all, just music. The songs were fantastic as they did tell the story very well, but I would rather have there be a less singing. The acting and performance overall was very well done, although it was very hard to follow the many story lines throughout the whole show. Overall, the performance was well done, but maybe to long for some tastes.