Writer and Editor: Kelly Plummer
Deborah Bradshaw, former Broadway cast member and current producer and director of CCC’s production of Les Miserables, has always wanted to be on the director’s end of the show she once loved performing. 2013 marks a special year of theatre for Cumberland County College, as they received permission from Music Theatre International, Inc. to perform the beloved musical. The book was originally written by Alain Boubil and Claude-Michel Schönberg; with music by Claude-Michel Schönberg and lyrics by Herbert Kretzmer. It was recently adapted as a musical film in 2012, mainstreaming the story to broader audiences. Bradshaw is sure to bring a new perspective to this musical with nothing less than Broadway quality.
The CCC cast is doing all they can to ensure that their audience receives the highest quality performance. When asked what is being done to prepare for the show – cast member, Bev Beardsley, says, “Rehearsing, rehearsing, rehearsing! Listening to the music over and over, going over blocking, getting into the sequence of the show. Most actors in the show are playing multiple roles, so you really have to be on your toes as to what comes next!”
Les Miserables will be held on November 21-24, 2013 in the Frank Guaracini Fine and Performing Arts Building. Tickets are on sale for $15 for adults, $12 for ages 55+, $10 for ages 18 and under, and a CCC special offer: $5 tickets for CCC students (for 1-2 tickets), with a valid Fall 2013 student ID. Tickets can be purchased at the box office Tuesdays, Thursdays, or Fridays from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., Wednesdays from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m., or call 856-692-8499.
It sounds as though Les Miserables is one show you will not want to miss. According to Beardsley, “…the message of the show – its themes of redemption, sacrifice, and love – make it such a powerful musical.”
The setting takes place in 19th century France, Les Miserables is the story of Jean Valjean, who after serving an unwarranted 19 years in prison, is ready to return to the world a free man. Aware that his parole bears false information, preventing him from receiving a job or housing, he breaks parole in hopes to begin a new life. In his time of need, the kindness and mercy of a priest changes Valjean’s heart, allowing him to live a life for God. Throughout the course of his journey, he finds himself on the run from Inspector Javert, who knows of the broken parole.
After years of hiding, Valjean returns as the mayor of the area. He is comfortable with his status, and the life he leads. One day, the mayor comes face-to-face with Javert in one of his shops. Meanwhile, Fantine, a worker in the same shop, is discovered to have a daughter out of wedlock, who lives with an innkeeper and his wife. Victim to the paranoia of the laborers and the belief that she steals to support her child, Fantine is fired and forced into prostitution. Unfortunately, the mayor is preoccupied in his fear of being discovered and fails to prevent Fantine from losing her job.
Later on, Fantine falls gravely ill, and meets the mayor. Feeling responsible for her condition, he promises to find and care for her daughter, Cosette. The mayor immediately adores Cosette; she has given him his life purpose and the love of family.
As time goes on, Cosette grows into a beautiful young woman, who falls in love with a French Revolutionary, named Marius. Javert discovers Valjean’s true identity, once again forcing him to run. However, Valjean fights to protect Maurice to ensure Cosette’s future happiness and security.