Described as “the musical of musicals,” Boublil and Schönberg’s Les Misérables is the longest running West End musical production, surpassing The Phantom of the Opera by more than 500 performances. After 26 years on the West End and 25 on Broadway, the show was adapted as an Oscar-winning film (including Best Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role for Anne Hathaway’s Fantine).
In other words, Amherst Leisure Services Community Theater had their work cut out for them.
“It’s probably the most challenging, most rewarding, most inspiring musical we could have chosen,” director Dave Grout said. “Images of the musical are so ingrained already that being able to put a new, fresh spin on it…but giving people the same experience…is a big challenge.”
Yet this amateur theater group rose admirably to the task. The music and acting were both brilliant, starting with the first few bars of the opening song. While Jean Valjean may have been the one who stole a loaf of bread, it was the backstage crew that truly stole the show. If you've worked in theater before, you know how truly integral the sets, costumes, and props are to a production. It seems as though Amherst Leisure Services Community Theater managed to take some of the best costumers and set designers from Western Massachusetts into their ranks, giving them a production that rivals some professional theater companies.
The production runs from Thursday, January 16 until Sunday, January 26. For more information, click here.