The Les Mis Low-Down

It’s that time of year again!
The time of year when all your musically gifted friends start getting really nervous and going to weird things called “auditions” or performing in something called “cabaret.” They may cancel plans in order to go to rehearsals or stop talking entirely in order to preserve their voice. It’s a hassle. It’s a ritual.  It’s a confusing time for all of us. It’s the annual musical! This year, the Drama Club has decreed that our school will be putting on the play, “Les Miserables.”

For those of you who don’t know, Les Mis is a nearly three hour opera that tells the story of Jean Valjean, a former convict who, after escaping his parole and the clutches of Inspector Javert, tries to lead a calm, peaceful life with his adopted daughter. Of course, as it was written by Victor Hugo, this doesn’t exactly go as planned. The play follows the lives of Valjean, Javert, Cosette, and then the notable rabble and riffraff of Paris, right as they are about to go through the October Revolution (an unsuccessful revolt in Paris led by students in Paris against the monarchy).

In other words, Les Mis is certainly an undertaking. It will require long rehearsals and crazy hours to make this musical one of the best yet.

To get some performer’s points of view on this choice, I went around interviewing some cast members to see what they felt about this year’s choice of play.

One cast member, Grace Ferguson, was excited. When I asked her how she felt about the fact we were doing Les Mis as our school play, she said, “I’m really happy about it! I always heard that P and Kenney [editor’s note: Mr. Petrucci and Mr. Kenney, the heads of the drama program] would only do Les Mis in their last year of being directors. I never thought that I would get to be a part of it, so I’m pretty excited.” That seemed to be the general consensus of all the cast members I talked to. Performers were overall pretty excited to be a part of this historic undertaking. However, one member of drama club brought up a different perspective. Kayla So, a sophomore and member of the pit band, was a little concerned about the stamina needed to perform this level of entertainment. When asked about the choice, Kayla’s words were, “I think it’s going to be hard. It takes a lot of stamina to sing the whole play, and there’s a lot of singing. It’s definitely going to be a lot of work involved, and I think we can do it, but it’s a lot.” Overall, however, Kayla was largely positive. She commented on how pretty all the music is, and how excited she was to be a part of providing that music.

That seemed to be the general consensus. Cast and Crew were overall pretty excited to be a part of this historic undertaking and looked forward to the beginning of rehearsals. They had some qualms with the long rehearsal hours and the dedication that would be required, but ultimately felt that it was worth it to be involved in such an iconic musical and were excited for the process of it to begin.

By: Katie Healy

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