Sunday, April 1, 2012

Les Miserables

Finally got to go see Les Miserables on the stage here in Boston. I have wanted to see this musical for 25 years. Here is a recap of my history with Les Mis

  • When it launched, a hot girl in high school was totally into it. Trying to impress her one day, I tried to reference it and I pronounced it sounding something like Lez Mizzeraballs. Embarrassing. 
  • When I was in college, a good friend sang the music constantly prompting me to want to buy the CD
  • After I graduated college, I finally managed to buy the CD and spent several days trying to put the story together from the music. I got...close
  • While I was a firefighter (a lifetime ago), I bought the book and read it, realized it was nothing like the musical, but it made me love the musical all the more (and made me a bit of an expert on the battle of Waterloo since it is detailed in the novel for some strange reason). 
  • Now that I knew the story, I listened to the CD again, and again, and again. Loved it. Memorized it.
  • It was still fifteen years before I was finally in a town where Les Mis was coming to visit. 
  • My wife surprised me with tickets three weeks ago.
  • I saw Les Mis last weekend.

So, how was it when viewed live? It was breathtaking, life changing and unbelievably fantastic. I am still blown away. I could see it another hundred times. It is a fantastic story and the music is amazing, but the whole production is mind boggling. The way the sets change so quickly, the way the effects are done...everything about it.

One note about the production I saw in Boston. Fantine was different than I have ever heard her before. Usually she comes across as sad and a it pathetic to me. Sure she's had a terrible time, but as Kenny Rogers put it, "Every hand's a winner and every hand's a loser." Fantine has always seemed to wallow in her misery. (Admittedly, her life does suck). In any event, the Fantine in this most recent production was awesome. She was clearly pissed off! (As she should be). I loved how angry she came across. It made her much more likeable to me.

So, anyway, I am thrilled that I finally got to see this musical. It is three hours long but it feels like it is about an hour. One other nice thing about the Boston Opera House, you can have alcohol in your seats so I was also able to suck down some adult beverages while enjoying Les Mis. For me, it was like meeting a hot sorority sister you admired from afar in college only now you discover that she is even hotter, and you have a few drinks before sleeping with her and then once you do, it is even better than you ever expected. A crude analogy perhaps, but one that is very apt.

It was just that freaking good!

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