Wednesday, March 07, 2007

Lea's Miz



Yes folks, Lea Salonga’s back in Broadway where she is essaying the role of the tragic character Fantine in the theatrical adaptation of Victor Hugo’s Classic Novel Les Miserables at the Broadhurst Theater.

The Tony Award- winning musical created by the two collaborating geniuses Alain Boublil and Claude- Michel Schonberg, with English lyrics by Herbert Kretzmer and produced by Cameron Mackintosh is a heart-wrenching and thought- provoking musical that would melt even the hardest soul among us.



Les Miserables set in the 1800s in volatile France tells the stories of Jean Valjean an escaped convict and his struggles to start a new life while being relentlessly pursued by an obsessed Police Inspector Javert.

By the way, talk about injustice, like Nelson Mandela, Valjean was wrongly convicted for stealing a mere loaf of bread and served 19 years of his life for it!

You can just see the parallelism here of the situation in the Philippines where the poor would be easily convicted for minor offenses while the crocodiles who plundered millions remains scot-free. Hah, I long for the day when the long, long arm of the law will finally caught up with them and their shenanigans. Even though it is a moon shot still we are entitled to dream, di po ba?



Lea Salonga’s Fantine, a worker in a factory owned by Jean Valjean, (now a Mayor and a rich man) and the desperate mother who turned to prostitution in order to feed her daughter Cosette.

Cosette is in love with the rebel- student Marius who is in turn being secretly desired by Eponine, the daughter of the scheming Innkeepers, the Thenardiers.

Lea replaced Nikki Renée Daniels, an ensemble cast member who briefly took over for the miscast and much- maligned Daphne Rubin- Vega who found a graceful exit when she left last February to team up with Philip Seymour Hoffman in Jack Goes Boating Off- Broadway.

Songs like Master of the House, On My Own, I Dreamed a Dream, Do You Hear The People Sing?, Bring Him Home, One Day More and even Castle on a Cloud are veritable classics if not, classics in the making.

I have planned to watch the show this month but due to some work- related changes in my schedule and other stuffs I have to postpone it until April next month or until I replenish my Paid Time Off bank that I spent when I got sick with the flu early in the year. But I will definitely watch Les Mis before Ms. Salonga’s stint end in the summer.

So, my dream of watching Lea Salonga in Broadway will have to be still a dream, at least for now.

But to all of you out there, go forth and watch the show eventhough the new venue Broadhurst Theater which has a seating capacity of “just” 1, 100+ is quite smaller than the old one, Broadway Theater (1,900+) and also some say that the stage is less grand this time. Still, it will be a fascinating journey and worth the time and money that you will spend since it will be more up close and personal with the casts and of course, the presence of Lea Salonga which is the primary reason why I plan to watch the show.

Speaking of Broadhurst Theater, I watched the short- lived musical Lennon there when I was in the Big Apple in the summer of August 2005. You can read my review of the show

  • here



    Les Miserables Rehearsal:


    Old Post:
    Lea Salonga- Filipina Performer Par Excellence


    Links:

    DIVA Talk: Lea's Playbill Interview



  • Les Miserables Official Website

    About Les Miserables

    Broadway Word of Mouth

    8 comments:

    vernaloo said...

    Hi Bill :)

    Have you seen Hey Mr.Producer of Cameron Mackintosh? The concert which was a fund raiser and was attended by HM Queen Elizabeth? I've seen it (dvd only)and it was the best for me! Anyway Lea Salonga was there along with other broadway actors. She sang a song from Miss Saigon and of course "On My Own" and "I Dream a Dream"...very good.

    She was like rubbing elbows with Julie Andrews, Hugh Jackman and other famous actors.

    Anyway thanks for visiting my site. Yes...will link you :)

    snglguy said...

    I would love to watch Lea in Le Miz. Now if only a good samaritan would be kind enough to send me a round-trip ticket to the big apple... :-D

    Analyse said...

    thanks for visiting my hideaway. ok for exchange links ;)

    i've read les miserables and watched the english and french film versions and nothing compares to the book of course. there are a lot more of miserable moments like when fantine was obliged to sell her hair just to feed eponine... the misadventure of jean valjean.. the wicked inspector javert.. how i wish im just near the big apple to be able to watch lea salonga live..

    mitsuru said...

    vernaloo,

    yup i have seen the dvd. ang galing niya when she sang on my own. all star casts yun ng mga pinakamagagaling na mga actors/ actresses sa theater.

    magiging proud ka tlga n pilipino cya.

    snglguy,

    too bad, i did not win the $360 million megalotto the other night otherwise i could have sponsored your les miz junket. :)

    analyse,

    same here. did u read the novel of Gaston Leroux too?

    -Teresa- said...

    Hi there! I'm a new "visitor" of your site and enjoyed Lea's rehearsal/interview video that you posted. We watched the show last night and she gave a spectacular performance. She's as awesome as ever! Although I've seen Les Miserables several times in the Philippines, watching the show this time at Broadhurst Theater makes it more memorable because Lea is part of it. Even the tiny seats in the Theater didn't dampen my enjoyment. The show is still as moving as I remember it. I saw Lea perform in Miss Saigon in NYC in 1999 and in My Fair Lady at the Meralco Theater and I simply love, love, her. She gives so much pride to all Filipinos with her stellar talent and professionalism. Enjoy the show! - Teresa from Bergen County, NJ

    mitsuru said...

    -teresa-,

    Welcome and Thanks a lot for dropping by.

    I’ll be in the Big Apple in late March or early April to catch her on Broadway. I’m keeping my fingers crossed.

    I remember one guy telling his companion about the tiny seats and narrow aisles when I watched Chicago at the Ambassador Theater in ‘05, somebody butted in that the theaters were actually made when Americans are not hamburger- happy and the population were not that fat/ obese yet. LOL

    Yes, Lea Salonga makes us Filipinos proud.

    duke said...

    i was in NY for four days in the first week of january. one of my things to do in life before i die is to watch les miserables on broadway. and i was in NY to do that. but i couldn't get tickets as the show was sold out. bummer. i didn't want to watch any other production. and i hear that les miserables is in its final run, closing in june-july of this year. syet.

    Gina said...

    I take it you're also a big fan of Lea? (obvious ano?=) My blogger friend Leah (not Salonga) sent me the link to your site and I enjoyed watching the video clips. Thanks for including them! Incidentally, my latest post is about The talented Ms. Salonga kaya I was given the link to your blog.
    Isn't she simply wonderful???

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