Posts Categorized: Les Miserables

Bring Him Home – Les Miserables – Broadway Songs for Father’s Day

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In this post for our Broadway Songs for Father’s Day week we are bringing you one of the best broadway fathers in existence, Jean Valjean. Although there is another male character with a daughter (The Inn Keeper), Jean ValJean never abandons his daughter, even though she isn’t biologically his. Not only does he adopt and take her under his wing, but he also finds her love and rescues him. That is what being a Dad is all about and why we wanted to share Bring Him Home from Les Miserables as one of our picks for Broadway Songs for Father’s Day and Dads week. Jean ValJean not only is the perfect father to everyone from his employees to the people of his town, but to strangers like Cosette and even her love Marius.

No matter what part of the show you are in, Jean ValJean is a Father. He lifts a wagon of a man who is being crushed. He takes care of the people of his town where he is the Mayor and he loves and cares for him employees. After one of them is fired because she wouldn’t sleep with her boss, he finds out and instead of hiring her back, he takes care of her. What he did and did not expect is that he also falls in love with her and wants to make sure she has an amazing life, even though they both know it is almost over. One of Fantine’s last requests is that he rescue and take care of her Daughter Cosette and without even thinking about it, Jean ValJean rushes to rescue her from the Inn Keeper and his wife.

No matter who he comes in contact with in the show, Jean ValJean acts like a Father and shows that he loves everyone. Even Jabert who has dedicated his life to destroying Jean ValJean is spared when Jean Valjean could have easily killed him. When he finds out Cosette is in love with Marius and that Marius is at the baracade where he will be killed, Jean ValJean puts his own life in danger for a complete stranger. That is something that only a Father could do and someone that loves everyone like they are their own kids. That is why Bring Him Home from Les Miserables is one of the best Broadway Songs for Father’s Day. It shows the emotions and love that Jean ValJean has for his adopted daughter Cosette and even the love and hope he has that he can rescue Marius in time to bring him back to her and raise him like he is his own. Jean ValJean is one of the most amazing Father’s on Broadway even though he doesn’t have a biological child and one of the most caring people. That is why we wanted to share Bring Him Home from Les Miserables as one of the best broadway songs for Father’s Day and Dads.

Les Miserables Flash Mob at a Wedding Video

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I’m completely over the whole flash mob thing, but I am deathly afraid that this will end up happening at my wedding as well…especially because of all of my musical theatre, junky friends.  Not that I’m getting married soon, but this is definitely a possibility lol.  I saw this video and wasn’t going to share it originally, but then I heard some of the male voices and began to fall in love with it.

Thernardier and his wife were pretty weak which was disappointing, but the girl in the black dress sounded amazing.  The blond girl in the beginning was really weak as well.  There is a shorter girl that had an ok voice, but you don’t actually get to see her, except when she is finishing.  The majority of the men in this video had great voices.  I can almost guarantee this is probably a wedding from a bunch of people who either go to karaoke or went to musical theatre school and remained friends.  My freshman year of college I went to Point Park College, which is now Point Park University which is known for dance and musical theatre.  This is actually sort of what lunch was like.

Whenever a new show would come out or someone would start singing a melody to themselves, a lot of other people would join in.  During finals or mid terms, you’d hear everyone practicing in their rooms or in the halls until at least 3 or 4 in the morning.  I almost miss being able to hear really amazing voices all day and being able to walk into any room, say I have a song stuck in my head and have at least one or two people belt it out perfectly and on tune.  It was actually kind of fun.  Later this month a few of us are getting together in NYC to go see a couple of shows as well.  I haven’t actually seen some of these people since 1999 and the early 2000’s so it’ll be a lot of fun to get together again.  We’re also having another meetup in the West End in London for a couple of us that moved out there.  Anyways, I am completely afraid this will end up happening at my wedding, and if it doesn’t, I’ll probably be even more pissed that it didn’t.

Nick Pitera Performs All Major Characters & Songs from Les Mis. Holy Crap!

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I was absolutely shocked when I saw this video on YouTube.  It is from someone I haven’t heard of before named Nick Pitera and he flawlessly performs almost all of the main characters from Les Miserables and their main songs.  Not only can he alter his voice to be male or female, but his inflections, tone and his acting behind it is absolutely amazing.  Although I normally hate these brady bunch styled videos, this one is freaking amazing!  He starts out in a girls voice and lets face it, he doesn’t look like the butchest kid on the block.

Because of this I expected him to continue with a high pitched song and not be able to change.  His voice is pretty good as a Fantine so I wouldn’t have been angry or upset and would still have loved the video.  However, when he goes into his next role, Jean Valjean, he all of the sudden lowers his voice and becomes a completely new person.  It’s amazing.  It also shows you how much talent is actually out there right now.  I haven’t actually seen or noticed Nick Pitera on any playbills or casts that I have seen, so I don’t know if he ever made a show or cast yet, but if he works on his presence and not overacting everything, he could definitely start to make a name for himself on the great white way.

Nick Pitera has a ton of talent and you can tell he is getting ready to explode with videos like these.  He also has a ton of other videos uploaded to his YouTube.com channel, however I haven’t watched any of them so I can’t actually comment on if he is better at broadway or ballads or regular pop music.  I have watched this video of Nick Pitera singing all of the major roles and songs from Les Miserables and I am completely blown away by it.  If Nick ever reads or finds this post, I want to say great job and we love your video.  My assistant who hates musical theatre, showtunes and high notes even went wow when he heard you sing and watched the video.  Awesome job!

les miserables touring cast

Les Miserables Touring Cast Washington DC Reviews – Get Tickets Here

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les miserables touring cast

les miserables touring cast

I just went to see the 25th anniversary touring cast of Les Miserables at the National Theatre in Washington DC and was absolutely blown away!   I was nervous about seeing it because the movie comes out on Tuesday, but I am extremely happy I went, besides the overweight guy next to me elbowing me during the first half and the rude guy snorting behind me, I don’t think I’ve teared that much since I saw Phantom which is one of my favorite shows.  Overall the 25th anniversary touring cast of Les Miserables reviews should be amazing.  They did an awesome job.  Here’s my full Les Miserables Review.

Buy les miserables tickets here.

The only negative things I had to say about the show were that the grown up Cosette was not memorable.  You didn’t remember her, you don’t think of her and she just didn’t exist.  The same could be said for Marius.

The difference between Marius and Cosette is that Marius had an awesome voice.  Unfortunately he lacked any and all stage presence.  On the barricade, you didn’t see him, even when they called him out.  Instead you watch other people.  At his wedding with Cosette, you were watching other characters and they both disappeared.  You enjoyed watching him as Eponine died, but that is only because Briana Carlson-Goodman was holy sh*t amazing!  If she was the Eponine I saw in the London cast of Les Miserables,  the scene would have died, not the characters.  In his defense, his microphone didn’t seem to be working correctly during the first act, but his acting and his voice were solid, he just lacked the ability to grab your interest and stand out.  The blond guy and the guy with the brown hair that was combed to one side caught your eye the entire time, even when the spotlight was on Marius. The last weak cast member was Jean Val Jean.

He acted like he didn’t want to be there.  He walked on stage, sang his song and left.  He honestly looked like he didn’t care.  I don’t care if it’s the holidays and you might want to be with your family, or if you’re just having a bad day and wanting to be a diva.  People are paying over $100 per ticket to see this show and for the person playing Jean Val Jean to give a performance like he was annoyed and didn’t care about being there is offense to every actor, every person who paid for the show and everyone around me commented that he was very good.  If you don’t want to be there, quit the show and let someone else have your part.  I was offended by his performance.  With that said, lets go into the good stuff.

Javert was amazing!  Andrew Varela completely stole the show.  He was the only thing you could see, here and look at when he was on stage.  He stole the show and completely showed that he really was Javert and made you hate and fall in love with him.  His voice was strong, his presence was insane and he absolutely brought everyong to their feet, even before the cast took a bow.  He was incredible and it was amazing to get to see him perform.  I would gladly attend another show only because he is in the cast.

Eponine – Amazing!  Briana Carson-Goodman has a holy sh*t amazing voice, more presence than Carol Channing and is now almost one of my favorite people to watch at a level of Kristin Chenoweth.  I had never heard of her before, but after seeing her, Lea Salonga got taken on a run for her money.  This girl can sing, she can out act anyone else but Andrew Varela (close tie on those two, she wins though) and her stage presence was incredible.  When she was hiding behind the wall and not supposed to be seen, you actually kept trying to look to see her.  Her performance was amazing and her voice was incredible.  I would love to see the next show she is in and cannot wait to hear her again as well.  She took the song On My Own and absolutely brought it above and beyond what people were expecting.

Fantine was ok.  I enjoyed her voice, but I don’t like how they sped up the intro’s in some of her songs.  Her acting was good and she did a great job.  The Inn Keeper (Thenardier) and his wife were absolutely what you wanted to see and his wife completely stole the show when the two of them were performing.  The two made an awesome team that you loved to watch.  The two kids in the show were amazing and over performed their counterparts in the London cast and the rest of the cast gave a perfect show and performance.

The show was a shorter version of Les Miserables with a new staging.  They shrunk it down by speeding up some of the songs, which normally I would be pissed off about, but I actually enjoyed it.  I also like how they changed the set because of the size of the National Theatre vs. a larger theatre that could handle elaborate sets.

Instead of a rotating gate to Jean Valjean’s house, it was stationary.  The baricade took up the entire stage which was cool and the entries and exits were all done differently.  Instead of using a trap door to take Marius into the sewers, he dragged him off stage.  Instead of a blue light on Fantine when she died, they used white lights which was actually pretty cool.  They also had Jean Valjean sitting on the Baricade to sing Bring him Home instead of on the stool or at least by the floor and away from the other cast members.  It was a pretty cool way to do the show.

The 25th anniversary touring cast of Les Miserables is amazing.  I highly recommend you see it and you can buy broadway tickets for the show in your own city by clicking on the link above.  I give it 4 out of 5 stars because the show was amazing, but the person plating Jean Valjean ruined the role for me by looking bored like he didn’t want to be there and because the roles of Cosette and Marius weren’t as good as they should have been for the show.  If you are going to give someone lead roles, make sure they have a huge stage presence and that they can keep up with the other characters and cast members.  There is no reason you should be watching the supporting cast when they are singing solos and are supposed to be the focus.  Overall the show is amazing and I highly recommend you see the touring cast of Les Miserables.  Feel free to leave a comment below if you’ve seen the cast and what you think.

Current 2012-2013 Winter Broadway Tours & What To See

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There are a ton of amazing shows touring right now and what’s nice about the touring broadway casts is that you don’t have to wait in line in the cold at the TKTs counter in NYC to get a discount, instead you can order broadway tickets online by clicking that link. With all of the tours going on, which ones are kid friendly, which ones are fun and which broadway touring casts probably aren’t worth it. Here are my top 5 picks for touring broadway casts that you can buy as broadway gifts, or just for a fun day out with the family or a romantic night with a loved one.

1. Book of Mormon

I don’t think I have to tell anyone that this is one of the most sought after and in demand broadway touring casts you can see. It is not family friendly at all and deals with a lot of religious and anti religious topics. It is however an extremely funny show with some awesome music, and as long as you have a dark sense of humor, you will love the touring cast of the Book of Mormon. It is currently on a multi city tour and I did this post about how to get book of mormon tickets before they go on sale to the public. The Book of Mormon on tour is a must see for anyone who wants a fun night out and to see a funny show that will keep you laughing for hours.

2. Cats

I never thought people would get a chance to see this show again, but it is back on tour in the US and in Canada. Unfortunately it does not look like it is going to hit any major venues, so you need to look at cities outside of your region for it. If you click the link above for tickets, you can find when it’s going to be in a city near you. Cats is a family friendly show and kids and people of all ages will love it. The show has starred a ton of amazing Actors and the music is still sung and known by almost everyone at every wedding and other celebration event. This is an amazing show that millions of people love and this may be one of the last times you’ll be able to get to see it.

3. Les Miserables

This is one of the most classic shows and if you want the perfect show to cuddle up with your loved one, this is it. It’s touring through the summer and if it is the tour with the new stage, effects, etc… it is one million times better than any other stage production you have seen before. Les Miserables is a love story that takes place during the French Revolution. There is a movie version coming out starring a ton of broadway celebrities and the neat thing about it is that they had them sing live and they will make the music match their emotions and how they sang when they were being recorded. The show is incredible and is perfect for a date night with the person you love.

4. John Tartaglia’s Imagineocean

Most people know John’s name from his role in Avenue Q and then when he starred in Shrek. Other people know him for singing ridiculous songs about his cousin at cabaret shows and even though he may seem like he is insane, he put together an amazing black light puppet show for kids called Imagineocean. Imageineocean is about three friends who are on a treasure hunt. The three main characters go through and make new friends while singing and dancing and even interacting with the audience. This is a must see if you have kids and something that they will never forget.

5. Bring it On the Musical

If it ever leaves NYC, Bring it On the musical will be back on tour. This is the perfect show if you have teenagers who like cheerleading, self esteem issues or are trying to come out of the closet. Unlike the movie version, this one is very political and also deals with current issues like bullying, fitting in, being thin, dating, being gay, etc… It is high energy, stupid and probably some of the most fun you will have that you never thought you would. The cast recording is awesome and you’ll love the high energy routines. This is perfect for families and for anyone who just wants something fun to do.

There are a ton of other awesome tours right now like Jekyll and Hyde, Spamalot and even fun off broadway shows, but these are my top 5 for you if you are going with family, want a fun date night or need something to take your kids too. Feel free to add your own favorite broadway shows that are currently on tour through the winter.