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Stephany

Les Miserables - Lausanne 2009

The Théâtre de Beaulieu in Lausanne, Switzerland is welcoming Les Miserables from September 11 to October 3rd, 2009. This production will be in French and features an almost entire French cast (including Rachel Pignot as Eponine, who dubbed Amy Adams in the French version of "Enchanted" http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gsehKEM3BtM).

This is very exciting for French-speaking people!! Except the original Paris version and the 1991 revival, I believe there hasn't been another Les Mis production in French in Europe since then. Claude-Michel Schönberg explained in a radio interview that a rights issue implied that no French-language production could be set in France before the 25th aniversary tour so I imagine that's part of the reason they're doing one in Switzerland (hoping to attract French fans as well)

Official site : http://www.lesmiserableslausanne.ch/

Quique

I really like that poster. Great original design.

That productions sounds really neat!
HobNob

I'm going on the 12th, I believe it is. Looking forward to it.
Orestes Fasting

I'll probably buy tickets as soon as I know what my schedule is like for September. It's not every day you get to see the show in French, after all.
Stephany

Going on the 12th as well ! I'm very impatient to see it in French.
Elbow

I think I too should be going on the 12th.
Stephany

Spotted a very brief promo trailer (no images from the cast & costumes yet): http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u6hI_YgIuWY
HobNob

WHAT an informative trailer :p
Eli

I am seeing the show on the 19 September (if that is the Saturday!). I fly from London on the Friday and then back home again on the Sunday.

I am really looking forward to my first ever visit to Switzerland and seeing the show in the French.

I am lucky enough to know a few of the cast from Paris - which is how I first heard of the plans for it back in March.

There are cast photos and costume photos on the facebook page

http://www.facebook.com/pages/Les-Miserables-Lausanne/59155982245#/album.php?aid=135604&id=59155982245

Eli
HobNob

Ah, thanks Eli!

Only just over a week now.
Stephany

Finally! The Premiere is tonight and there was an interview with the director + images from the last rehearsals (you can hear "One Day More") on TV this morning : http://www.tsr.ch/tsr/index.html?siteSect=500000&channel=info#tab=info_1245;program=25;vid=11200973

Yay! Can't wait. Cool
Eli

lovely to see more of the cast (especially those I know from Paris). Beginning to get a little bit excited now.

Eli
Quique

Omg...*die*

That orchestra.

*Orgasm*
Eli

Pictures from the show

http://www.facebook.com/album.php?aid=106878&id=667957715&l=7eb247f5c9

Assume she is a professional and I won't be able to take photos
Orestes Fasting

Warning for anyone who might be trying to buy tickets for the Lausanne production: their payment system is screwed up. I tried to buy a ticket, it worked fine up to the last 'verifying payment' screen, then it churned for a while and spat out a "Sorry, we couldn't process your order, please try again" message. So I tried again with the same result. Then wondered if someone had somehow grabbed the seat I was trying to buy, so I changed the seat and tried again with the same result. And then wondered if it was a problem with my American debit card and switched to my French debit card and tried again, same result. Then, belatedly, I went to the Bank of America website to take a look at my account, and discovered that every one of those failed attempts was listed as a pending charge to my check card. After much screaming at the computer screen, I hit the back button on the ticket page in the hopes of at least being able to copy down the error message, gritted my teeth and resubmitted the form data, and I got... a confirmation number and a "sorry for the inconvenience, your order couldn't be processed at the moment due to a technical glitch, we'll fix it in a day or two and send you another email." 'Another' email?! I never got one in the first place. The 'current orders' section of my account with the site is empty too.

Best-case scenario, that last screen means I got my ticket and all the other pending charges won't go through. Second-best scenario, they are nice like Telecharge and contact you to ask if you REALLY meant to buy so many separate tickets for the same day. Third-best, none of it actually went through and I'll have to buy myself a crappy last-minute ticket at the box office when I get there. Fourth-best, they are assholes and I will have to dispute the charges, which seems pretty clear-cut since some of the pending charges are for tickets for the SAME SEAT and I have at least one of the "lol whoops technical difficulties" messages printed out in black and white. Worst-case scenario, they've been hax0red and I'll have to cancel both my debit cards and get Bank of America and BNP Paribas to cancel fraudulent charges.

There's a 60-day window to dispute a charge, so I can afford to wait a few days and see if they fix it on their own. But I'm lucky in that it won't wreck my finances to have several hundred bucks' worth of pending charges hanging over my account balance, and I know not everyone has that luxury, so this is a warning: be careful buying tickets to the Lausanne production. The online payment process may not be screwed up for everyone, but it was certainly screwed up for me.
Eli

I had no problem getting my ticket - went through first time via the official site - even picked my own seat and have the e-ticket print out.

Hope you have the ticket you wanted - maybe see you on Saturday?

Eli
x
HobNob

I feel that I should give some form of feedback on Saturday's show - but I think Elbow'll be writing a far more detailed and insightful review type thing than I'm capable of once she's home again.

Essentially, I really enjoyed myself. We were in the middle of row F, so no complaints about the view. The sound was very dodgy at times - mainly during ensemble numbers when even the full chorus couldn't give any volume, and then during songs such as One Day More when you couldn't hear any of the descant parts (such as Javert talking about infiltrating the barricades. My mother was briefly confused upon seeing Javert walking around behind the barricade as to whether he was still Javert incognito or just the same actor playing another part). Enjolras' mic also failed for his first line, which was a shame.

The set was interesting, in that there wasn't much of it. The barricade was made of boards which were embedded in the stage floor, so wires were lowered for the cast to clip to the bits to then be raised. Master of the House was just a table, and Javert's suicide... well, he appeared to be crushed by a piece of barricade. That was incredibly odd.

I very much liked Valjean's voice, though there was an INCREDIBLY dodgy note (/range of notes) on the final 24601 of Who Am I.

The Thernardiers were perhaps overly comic, being incredibly panto. Setting aside the fact that they essentially sold Cosette, there was nothing at all evil or sinister about them. Dog Eat Dog was very jolly indeed. It probably wasn't helped by the fact that Thernardier reminded me of Dimitri.

I liked Javert, but he too was very cartoon-like. He was tall and lanky, walking with a stoop when he was creeping about after Valjean. It was like he was a cross between Dick Dasterdly and Robbie Rotten. Each time Valjean got away, 'foiled again' was the look in his eye. Also, the way he appeared from behind the curtain before the Confrontation, and from behind the barricade and just before his Suicide were like when the pantomime villain comes on. I expected there to be boos.

I know that the Swiss are odd in their applause, but there were some very awkward gaps when there should plainly have been clapping, and other instances where they launched into applause when there very clearly wasn't a break for it to fit into. The first few lines after Gavroche exposed Javert were completely lost. They also wouldn't stop after the final curtain came down, but the Swiss are very fond of their encores.

Nothing else springs to mind at the moment. I'd be interested to see the alternate cast, but it's hard to get home from Lausanne at that time, and I don't think father would be so keen.
Eli

thank you for the report. I would be intersted to know who you saw in each part.

I am seeing the show on Saturday and back in the UK on Sunday so will post a report then.

Eli
x
HobNob

We saw:

Rene as Valjean
Pierre as Javert
Marius... We're not actually sure.

So second cast, and unless Marius was an understudy, no understudies.

Frederic was my favourite ensemble member. He has a nice face.
Elbow

We had the Fantine understudy.
HobNob

Oh yes. Her too.

Oh, and I didn't say last time how much I liked Grantaire. He was very very good.

And Marius singing Empty Chairs and Empty Tables was a little too funny, as he strutted around clutching bits of the giant red flag, and tripped over it a couple of times too. Such melodrama.
Eli

Marius would have been either Virgile Le Dreff (who was an understudy in Le Roi Soleil) or Julien Salvia.

I am hoping that Rene is Valjean tomorrow as I do like his voice. I don't think Rachel is Eponine which is a shame for me!

Eli
Stephany

Julien Salvia's first performance as Marius was on Tuesday (15th). Virgile has done all the other performances so far. When Julien is not on, he's in the ensemble.

Rachel's performances as Eponine are Sunday September 20 (3pm) and Thursday September 24 (7:30pm). When she's not Eponine she's in the ensemble.

Pierre Babolat is Javert on the 19th, 20th, 25th September and Oct 1 & 2. Not sure about all the dates of René but I do know that he's on as Valjean on the 19th of September and 1st of October.
HobNob

Oh, fantastic. Thank you.

I might see if I can get another visit when an alternate cast are on, but I don't live in hope.
Eli

OK a quick report as I am exhausted!!!

I really enjoyed the show but wish I had seen it on the Friday as well as the Saturday as then I could have spent one evening doing translations in my head and the 2nd just enjoying the show.

Having spent Saturday wandering around the hills of Lausanne in the morning and the lake in the afternoon I finally arrived at the theatre in the rain around 6.45 pm so went and had a drink waiting for the doors to open.

Great seat on row 2 but quite a few times the sound was dodgy and the actors were drowned out by the orchestra.

Rene was really good as was Yoni, Pierre and Virgile (not sure that Julien's voice would fit Marius so well as Virgile's did)

Never been a fan of female voices and I wasn't totally convinced by Fantine - possibly her range was too low to really do the role justice.

A few times the set got in the way of the action - but overall bearing in mind the limited run it was very inventive compared to the very expensive London show.

I am hoping its extended and I can fit another trip over in the middle of October - but I suspect it won't be extended that long. Theatre was probably only half-full, very little advertising in the town - I only saw 2 little posters and one bus with an advert on the side and my hotel had no idea about it (and nothing in fnac for the show) and reduced prices for the coming week.

But I am glad that I went - if only to see the show in its original language.

Eli
x
HobNob

Glad you enjoyed it! Very Happy

There are posters around in Vevey and Montreux, but nothing massive. There have been half page adverts in the free press though (Le Matin, 24 Heures etc) - But I suppose it's a very big theatre to fill!
HobNob

I've just had some news about the production from my mother (who lives in Switzerland. She isn't involved or anything like that). Apparently it's made huge losses, and they aren't even sure that they're going to be able to pay everyone involved. Or so goes the story. Is there not some form of insurance against that kind of eventuality? Anyway, there we are. A shame.
Eli

Such a shame if that is true as I know all the cast really enjoyed their time there and are sad to be back in Paris etc.

The last tv show I found

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bimG1d1wP60

The UK tour starts soon and ends in Paris next year - in English! Although the ticket prices in Paris are over double those for the UK tour so I won't be going! The English tour http://www.lesmis.com/tour.htm

Back in Paris on Thursday to see 'Mozart l'opera rock'!!

Eli
x
lesmisloony

Oh God, I know I'm gonna drag this off topic now and I apologise, but omgwtf Mozart l'Opéra Rock is my favourite thing ever right now. I've listened to nothing else for months.
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