Saw this in July for the second time in London, and it is extremely moving in large part due to the great cast. I've seen the show in NYC and elsewhere, and it is certainly the London cast that makes the difference - it's the best around.
The theatre sound is fantastic and the experience of being there wonderful. The set is a bit under-detailed at points, but nothing negative to include in the letter home.
I want to start off by saying a very Happy 29th Anniversary to the world's longest running and most outstanding! Musical 'Les Miserables'. Anyone who after 29 years has still not seen this show, don't take this the wrong way, but you're mad and missing a real treat. Go and see it! When I first left college in 2001, I got to take part in a Master class where we did a show-case of Les Mis songs. I am so proud to have had the chance to stand on the stage at the Palace Theatre in Leicester Square, where it ran until 2004, before moving up the road to its new home at the Queens. I have also been blessed to include many of the songs in my own shows myself and with my group. I have seen the show more times now than I can remember and it never gets old or boring. It always proves to be nothing short than amazing! and of course it now has the film to add to the many great concerts and recordings they have done over the years and the string of awards the show has won. Fingers crossed this time next year we'll be celebrating 30 years. To all the cast, crew and everyone! who has been involved with the production over the years. Keep up the good work and keep going 'One Day More'. I'll be back to see it again really soon! In the meantime, the very best wishes and Happy Anniversary - #LesMiz29 - The music, the set, the story, the everything! about it is just brill! this has to be the best show in the West End and it's not to be missed!.
Wow... Les Miserable was the BEST musical I've ever seen and I honestly don't even care for musicals but Les Miserable I LOVE! We were actually just walking around London and wanted to check out China town and luckily we walked upon Les Miserables Theater and just decided to watch it. Of course their were sold out the night we first seen Les Miserables but the next night still had good, expensive yet worth every single penny seats. We were sitting on the middle balcony area where you could see the entire stage and each ticket was 84 British pounds which is about $140 US currency. Of course the night we watched to show it was packed, there was not one single seat empty. The cast are extremely talented and had AMAZING voices. Their voices was way better than the movie and the set was so creative. If you are ever in London, Les Miserable is a MUST see!!
Les Miserables has the potential to be the best musical ever and for some it may indeed be the best in their eyes. In a way it shoots itself in the foot and leaves some of the audience behind because there is so much storyline and so many lyrics to cover it can be overwhelming and quite confusing for the innocent onlooker. I recommend that you view the film or read the plot before watching this musical because it can give you the run around if you are not familiar with what it is trying to show you. I actually know someone who fell asleep whilst watching it as it was so tiresome for her to follow. The singing throughout this show is outstanding and powerful. The imagery and overall atmosphere that is created is also incredible. In short, Les Miserables is a masterpiece but it may take some prior watching of it or understanding of the story for one to truly be able to appreciate the entirety of what's happening before you.
This is my most favorite musical and I loved this very talented London cast. The songs were sung so full of heart that you can't help but get teary eyed in some of them.
We enjoyed the show despite the incredibly disruptive couple who we had the misfortune of sitting in front of. They were obviously drunk and they laughed, talked loudly and the guy burped (I think about 8 times and very LOUDLY) that I almost felt like we were on some game show to test others' boiling point before someone tells them to GTFO or STFU. Not only did these two arrive late at the start of the show they were late returning to their seats after the intermission. Thank goodness they were asked to leave around 3/4 mark of the show. A manager (I assume) was called and he sat nearby waiting for any bad behavior to kick them out. After their 8th burp he beelined over to them and asked them to leave. I heard the whole conversation and I was amused by how polite he was in kicking them out and their polite reaction in being asked to leave. This situation would have played very differently in the States and I imagine things would get ugly.
Once I return home I plan on buying the novel. This one has me inspired me to start reading it.
Is 5 stars the limit?
What can you say? Les Mis in London. Unbelievable experience.
An Asian Cosette was unexpected but she was wonderful.
The girl who played Eponine was probably the strongest voice in the cast. Thenardier, obviously, stole the show as the comedic relief.
Excellent cast from top to bottom.
I've seen many plays on Broadway in NYC and wanted to make Les Mis my introduction to London's West End. SO glad I did. Probably the highlight of my trip.
Tip: At the Queen's Theatre the back rows have somewhat obstructed views. Only a couple of scenes were slightly impacted -- and only for a moment. I don't often like sitting too close for live theatre but will be cautious to choose an unobstructed view when I return to this venue in the future.
Tip #2: The first act is quite long. My poor date, who drank a fair amount of wine before the performance and announced she needed to go to the restroom just as the lights dimmed and the orchestra began signaling the beginning of the performance, was in torture waiting for the first intermission.
Even from the very top of the upper circle this show blew my mind. It's been my favourite musical since I was 15 and this was the first time I saw it professionally performed. The cast were stella, the voices were clear, crisp and beautiful.... The story of course was heartbreaking. It was beautifully staged, the set, costumes and choreography were incredible. Well done to the whole cast, they have quite a sensation here.
If you're in London, don't miss this show! Excellent cast, and especially enjoyed Na-Young Jeon's performance as Cosette. I would certainly go again.
As the film version of Les Miserables is about to hit the big screen, I thought it an appropriate time to review the longest running theatre musical in London
Adapted from Victor Hugo's book, the show originally opened in Paris but its spiritual home is really in London where it has now been running continuously for 27 years. To me, its true home is at the Palace Theatre where I saw it for the first time though it has since moved to the Queen's Theatre on Shaftesbury Avenue
Be warned though. This isn't a light-hearted relaxing musical. Come expecting to have your emotions put through the wringer, to have to concentrate to follow the story and the different characters, to live with, laugh with and lose some of the characters that paint this turbulent period in 19th century French history
You will be rewarded for your efforts with thoughts, emotions, and memories that will stay with you long after you've left the theatre. However, the wonderful thing for me were the strong musical tunes and phrases playing in my mind for weeks, making this a true musical in my book unlike some of the modern musicals which are great in the theatre but you can't remember a single tune immediately after the show
There is something for everyone in the music from heart-breaking ballads such as On My Own and A Little Fall of Rain through whimsical interludes like Master of the House to uplifting choruses like Do You Hear the People Sing?
The story revolves around the life of ex-convict Jean Valjean, who escapes and is hunted for decades by the ruthless policeman Javert. The main part of the story takes place amongst the ultimately unsuccessful students' revolution which pre-dated the French Revolution
I love the clever use of the rotating circular stage and props to take us around settings ranging from a brothel to the barricades. You are truly transported into another land for those few hours of the show
Les Miserables is a true classic and if the film is anywhere near as good as the musical, it will be a must see film
Great seats (Paid for the fancy seats and worth every penny or is it pence)
Forgot to bring tissues so I had to cry into the hard bathroom paper towels :)
The poor guy next to me also forgot his tissues and he needed them more than I did ;)
Les Miserables was the very first theatrical production I watched in London - and the first I'd seen since the age of 14. I somehow managed to get a seat in the center of the second row, which just made the experience that much more captivating. Having such a clear and close-up view of everyone's expressions was absolutely breathtaking.
Everyone performed spectacularly... every gesture seemed so natural, so full of heart.. and their voices.. oh, their voices.
The stage was set up beautifully and paired with the use of light and smoke - it made every scene seem as complete as you could ever expect from a theatre.
I wonder how much of it has changed since 1980.
Well, I may be a bit biased as this is my favourite musical of all time but it is always worth a visit. I've been at least 6 times!!
Les Miserables celebrated it's 25th Anniversary in 2010 making it one of the longest running musicals in the West End with world wide acclaim. It has been through lot since it opened in London in 1985, and if you area fan of the early recordings you will notice that the more classical/legit vocal style that was rife in the cast has evolved somewhat to incorporate the newer modern belt technique, especially amongst the the female lead characters. Some of the drama has also changed with the release of the 25th Anniversary version. But it is nontheless a profoud piece of theatre and will leave you with a lot of soggy tissues and a real sense of redemption.
Loosely based on the Victor Hugo novel of the same name, Les Miserables follows the life of Jean Valjean (Bring Him Home), a convict who had been jailed for stealing a loaf of bread to feed his family. In a bid to change his life he changes his name and builds a new to a back drop of the people's uprising of the French Revolution, whilst being hunted down by the infamous Inspector Javert who believes it his calling from God to deliver justice (Stars). Alongside these 2 huge, all encompassing characters we meet Eponine (On My Own), a young street dweller who is in love with the student Marius, a young man fighting for the people. Marius in turn falls in love with Jean Valjean's ward Cosette, daughter of Fantine (I Dreamed a Dream).
As revolution dawns and Javert gets ever closer to catching Jean Valjean, Jean Valjean must endeavour to pursue the life he has chosen, protecting his loved ones and dreaming of his own redemption.
With a recent cast change in the Queen's Theatre, Les Mis still stands strong as a leading musical in the West End. The music is strong, if not in all it's symphonic glory with a reduced band accompanying the cast since its move from The Palace Theatre on Shaftesbury Avenue, but it will still move you. Light relief is made through the ever enigmatic characters of Monsieur and Madame Thenardier (and I can highly recommend the current Mme Thenardier as she is my teacher!!) It certainly should not be missed if you have not seen it before, and if you have, go back again to be moved and inspired.
I feel it is a tad unfair to review a theatre based entirely on the show, however, I will always remember the Queen's Theatre for popping my Les Mis cherry. And boy was it good.
I was in the upper tier seats and it didn't even matter. The singing was mind blowing. I have been signing Jean Valjean's part of the confrontation all morning (which I am sure is starting to annoy my coworkers).
And don't even get me started on One Day More...
I got home and immediately starting watching the 10th anniversary on YouTube. (shh I am not obsessed, I don't want to hear it!)
Finally, I'd also like to give a shout out to Queen's theatre itself, which was an awesome venue. I will be going there again.
Came here Dec '12 to watch Les Miserables and it was unforgettable and the cast was excellent!
The Queen's Theatre's showing of Les Mis is as quality as they come.
Les Mis is a great story and the actors here have done a fabulous job of turning the book into a theatrical masterpiece. What I like about this story is that it teaches a great moral lesson instead of just being some drab show. It's funny, it's emotional, and it keeps you entertained. The theatre is located just near Picadilly, a few blocks up from the tube stop. Seating is comfortable, attendants were friendly and helpful and the show was fantastic!
Host of the longest running musical in history: Les Miserables.
It's not a huge theatre, so even if you get a ticket at the back it wouldn't affect your viewing too much. At first I thought my seat was too close to the theatre, but turns out it was great, you can see the actors closely and they are so good that you don't realized they are acting even being that close.
The musical is brilliant. The music, crew, stage and lightings are all impeccable. I absolutely loved every thing in the musical.
It's not cheap but it's worth every pence ( ;) ). I am so glad I went to see it.
If you plan to go, book your tickets well ahead, it gets sold out quickly and it's almost a full house every night.
Les Miserables music has been blasted into my mind by my fellow mates almost every weekend. After some pints, the Confrontation and numerous other songs are embedded in my brain for the rest of the evening, so you can guess that while watching the play, the music was already stuck in my mind and it didn't bother me one bit.
The theater was lovely in the sense there really wasn't a bad seat in the house. We ended up sitting on the second level a few rows back and I was still able to see the entire play along with hear the immaculate tunes and feel the intensity of every situation
The Venue is perfect for the performance due to the fact that its right in the middle of Central London. There is no way you can walk by this place and not get a tune in your head.
This is a great theatre for a great performance and an unforgettable experience.
Until January 2011, I was pretty much a Les Mis virgin. I knew practically nothing about it, except that a couple of good friends adored the show. Adored may actually be a bit of an understatement. Obsessed may be a better word. I knew a few songs from when they sang them randomly at Karaoke, but pretty much the only thing I knew about it was the quote that Darius made in the movie "Jeffrey":
"Yes, I am in CATS. Now and forever. The way I see it, I was too young for Chorus Line, and too 'happy' for Les Mis. I never did get that show. It's about a guy, who steals a loaf of bread, and then suffers for the rest of his life. For toast! Get over it. "
That's all I knew. Stealing a loaf of bread and suffering. Well when one of my obsessive friends was visiting, she decided that the four of us (her, me, my partner, and her future partner that we introduced on New Year's Eve) should go and see it. I'm always up for seeing musicals, so they got the tickets and we went.
I'm watching it. The music is quite good. The story is complex. And when I say complex, I mean complicated. And when I say complicated, I mean extremely complicated. The musical is all plot. I had actually never seen anything like it. Most musicals there's plot and song and it's fairly easy to follow. Not true for Les Mis. At the intermission, I turn to everyone and say, "WHAT the hell is going on?"
We finish the show. I'm still confused. I'm not sure about my feelings for the show. It's complex and complicated, and there's a lot of plot. So I think about it the next day. I also have the songs running through my head. I think about it again the following day. And I'm singing the songs. Three days later, while I'm STILL thinking about the show, I realize that if any show can make me think so much about it days after seeing it, there's something special there.
We bought the soundtrack. It prompted me to start reading Les Mis (because hey, it was free on the Kindle) on my trip to Saint-Emilion. A lot of people thought I was crazy for trying to read it. I did. Any musical that can make me read a 1000+ page novel where the entire beginning of the book is about a character that has about five pages of actual plot points, where there are pages about how the Paris sewage system works, and where there are many, many pages about the battle of Waterloo and how Napoleon could have won but in no way could have won clearly must be magical.
If you only see one musical in London, see this one.
There would be a Confrontation if I couldn't see the show One Day More. The Lovely Ladies that accompanied me loved it as I knew they would, but At the End of the Day I would even go On My Own. I felt like I was in the Stars listening to Norm Lewis as Javert, though Valjean was Master of the House. If I met him, I would Bring Him Home so he could Drink With Me and we could sing together. Even on a Wednesday evening, there were no Empty Chairs at Empty Tables in the entire theatre.
That's all I got. Third time seeing Les Miz, third time wanting to see it again.
This review is for The Queen's Theater's showing of Les Miserables.
I'm from the San Francisco Bay Area and have grown up loving musicals. I grew up in the age of Andrew Lloyd Webber and have always been silly with glee every time I heard ..."oh well, I never, was there ever, a cat so clever as...." (name that tune!?)
So, bottom-line, I love musicals! I've been to Curran Theatre in SF, I've been to Broadway in NYC and now finally I've seen a show in London. And oh was it a show!
I was a bit nervous dragging my new bf to ANOTHER musical! Oh, but what could I take him to that he'd really appreciate?! Les Mis I thought! It has the drama, the excitement, the canons blasting in the air and music...who can discount the music in this show? Oh what a great idea. The show was a hit! And most importantly my bf loved it. I was so pleased with myself at this point.
In any case, we caught an evening show on a week day. I tried to avoid tourists, but I could not. I sat in the most horrendous row, with the rudest and loudest couple ever! How could you eat a bag of peanuts during the show people? And unwrap it right before Éponine does her solo of "On My Own"? HOW RUDE!?! Ugh!
I still enjoyed the show nonetheless! The show still made an impression on me. I ultimately decided that there was nothing better than going to the theater in London. In this particular instance:
-The stage is small , but the sets were beautifully designed.
-The costumes, the lighting, the acting, all of it, brought the story to life.
-Oh how I loved Éponine, who doesn't? (I was in London during the '07-'08 cast and Joanna Ampil played Éponine that year.)
Les Mis is my favorite musical. My first experience with it was YEARS ago in London. I was ecstatic to not only see it again, but share it with my wife for her first viewing.
Theatre environment is exceptional and does Les Mis justice.
Long lines for toilets as they have only a few stalls.
Concession lines were quick and during the intermission they sold waters and ice cream cups up near the stage, on both sides, so you didn't have to retreat to the concession area for a treat.
Overall - top notch... truly as good as it gets.
Next to Billy Elliot and Lion King, Les Miserable belongs to the top three West End musicals I believe so.
This musical has a real story and history behind it. Undermined with their impressive stage background and costumes this piece reminds me more of a theatre experience then a musical. For my taste it has good depth and something you remember. Especially their moving melodies grab you.
Set amidst the social and political struggles of nineteenth century France, Les Miserables sweeps its audience through a tale of passion and destruction against a backdrop of a nation in the grip of revolution.
Having said that, you have to be passionate enough to follow the story over 3hours!
LES MIS... need i say more!!
BEST Musical in the westend... i know every single word of it... is that strange?!
Love it... saw it at the turn of 2011... with my friend from canada! We were very much up the back... the view was ok but someone had a huge hair doo... and then a shit loads of kids who were talking about random crap were behind us, but the soon shut up from the star! The venuse as usual was packed, im sure they dont have one night that it isnt!
Teh staging and theatre looks fantastic
Teh cast were totally incredible..The confrontation, tenardies(multiple songs) were all belted out by me later that night on the walk to the next bar!
I forgot who exactly played that night but the leads were incredible, Valjean - very good, captivating, I think Norm Lewis was Javert..., just googled it... yep he was! Legend... he is a total Legend, he really become Javert.
It is my favourite musical by far and will be going again, the music is just hair raising!
The Queen's Theatre in the West End is a grand old theatre and seeing Les Miserables there only heightened the experience. I had heard wonderful things about Les Miserables and was looking forward to seeing the play. Our seats were in the first row of the Dress Circle so we had an excellent view of the stage. The theatre is very intimate and I felt I would have enjoyed the show from any sit.
The music and performers were very good, but the actor who played Javert was my favourite. I liked watching his struggle as he tried to come to terms with his understanding of good v bad and how his experiences with Jean Valjean continuously challenged those views. The music is very powerful and I never found myself wanting the play to move along or getting restless. I was surprised when it was time for intermission and cheered loudly and lustfully when the play came to an end.
The Queen's Theatre is wonder environment for a play and Les Miserable is an outstanding production for the space.
The Queen's Theatre is a relatively new theatre to the West End, having been built in 1907.
Edwardian on the inside, the outside has a modern facade, as it suffered bombing during World War Two and required reconstruction.
The seats afford little legroom and the bars are not particularly glamorous.
Since 2004 the Queen's has been the home of The World's Longest Running Musical, Les Miserables. I don't really know what has made this musical so successful. The music is brilliant, I suppose. And this production provides a great spectacle.
When I saw it, the chap playing Val Jean was American, and his accent came through nearly every word he sang and I found it quite annoying. Aside from that it's a great big budget West End stalwart and if you've never seen a West End musical, Les Mis is a good place to start.
For me, it's a bit old hat, but I can't help be very picky. And I must admit I squirted some tears when Eponie kicked the bucket.
As with all the big shows, tickets are cheaper mid-week, and you should search about the net for deals, otherwise you'll end up paying £56 like I did.
The home of Les Miserables. Great theatre and WHAT A PRODUCTION!!! Why had I left it so long? The theatre is historic and in a way, lends itself perfectly to Les Miserable due to the theatre being if not wide, but deep and therefore - provides extra depth to the scenes, particularly when in the Parisian sewers - you can feel the cast are actually down in the pits beneath the cobbles and blood stained streets.
Make sure to grab yourself a ticket if you've not been before, or go again -I certainly will be.
The Queens theatre - another wonderfully historic piece of London history, showing off the wonderful masterpiece which is Les Miserables.
I got to watch my most favorite musical production, Les Mis here! The theatre is gorgeous and kept really clean and well! It's a very close venue, meaning it's not a ridiculously huge theater with bad seats such as the Pantages in Los Angeles or the Civic Theatre in San Diego.
I was lucky enough to be able to obtain tickets for row E and I felt like I was sitting right in the front row!
The cast was excellent! Sounds really close to the original London cast which says A LOT!!! I watch Les Mis almost every time it comes into town in So Cal, but I can say, after watching the cast at the Queen's Theatre, my experience will never be the same again!
This theatre even had "standing seats" for like 10 pounds for those who didn't mind standing the whole show. This was awesome as one person in our party decided last minute that they wanted to watch the production, but all the seats were sold out, so he was still able to catch the production with us!
I can't wait to return to London to watch it again!
God of Carnage.
This production showcases four actors at the top of their game in a new Yasmin Reza play which takes the magnifying glass to middle class marriages.
With wonderful performances from the hilarious cast, and Ralph Fiennes standing out as the louche lawyer who can't stop answering his phone, this is a show you shouldn't miss. And at an hour and a half straight through, you can get dinner in after as well.
Loved the show and the place. Stalls seats were great but I think any seat there would be. There are a few same day 10£ standing places for the cheap and those of far greater leg stamina than I (given the 3hr run time of Les Miserables).
The presentation of Les Mis, which I guess is about all this Theatre has shown for the past 6 or so years was great. The run time was long but you did not feel it given the fast pace and movement of the show.
It is impossible to miss this theatre with the huge Les Mis billboards, however on first glance, as I approached the theatre, I was surprised to see a glass facade on what I thought would be a very traditional and old fashioned theatre. When inside and you get beyond the glass facade you do indeed step into the traditional and enter the theatre through a series of well sign posted rabbit warren runs which direct you to wherever you are seated. I was seated in the front row of the upper tear and had an absolutely fantastic view of the stage and performance. I don't think the same could have been said for those further back or in those seats in the lower tears and stalls with restricted views (well worth the extra deliberation on the tickets web site!).
The seating is not spacious and the leg room was just about enough for me (at 5'8"). The seats were comfortable enough, however numb bum syndrome was setting in at the end of the performance (approx 3 hours). The toilets were very clean and the bars were ok. The theatre does start to get quite warm as the performance goes on so taking in something to drink is well advised. Staff are extremely helpful and polite.
The overall setting was great, helped by an absolutely amazing performance to boot!!
Even in the "gods", this theatre is still awesome. Les Mis is a classic in London, it can't go wrong in my mind.
I've now seen Les Miserables at the Queens Theatre three times in the past twelve months. I'm such a nerd.
My wife and I visited the Queens Theatre to see Les Miserables on our recent trip to London. I will try to keep my review based on the theater itself. Excellent location, extremely pleasant and helpful staff, really no bad seats, and well stocked bar. For me, that makes this a A+ theater worthy of my recommendation.
Melanie and I were in London for the weekend so I decided to get some tickets to one of the shows. We got some good middle row seats in the dress level, I think that's what they called it but they were pricey! I would have given them five starts if the price was smaller. The stage is very small but they have great set designs and all the many scenes were visible and choreographed well. They accepted American Express which was nice and I had no problems picking them up at will-call. Les Miserables was wonderful. Melanie and I enjoyed every bit of it.
My wife and I saw les mis here last night. Off to a slow start, it gatheted steam as it went along. Of course, this is a wonderful story; the actors only so so in the end I'm afraid. The venue; marvelous and intimate, we were in the staffs and it was great, can't imagine there being a bad seat in the house.
What an environment to see one of the most grandiose, yet human plays ever.
Went to see Les Miserables here and it was fantastic. Would go back again if I could.
This is a very neat old venue hosting Les Miserables. Both the theatre and the show are top notch, and would be a shame to not visit for one or both. The limited site tickets are certainly fine here as you save a ton of dough and can still see everything in the show by leaning slightly forward for certain moments. Thank you, London performing arts, for this delightful experience!
Les Miserables has been playing at The Queens Theatre since April 2004 with no sign of retirement. The production has been in London at other locations and is now in its 23rd year. It really is a memorable show that I think everyone can enjoy. The stage effects are really spectacular and reasonably priced tickets can be found for the show. The theatre originally opened in 1907 but suffered considerable damage during the second world war. George Bernard Shaw,Kenneth Branagh, Marlene Dietrich, and Maggie Smith have played the boards of this theatre. it is a Grade II listed building, so pending no further damage this building will be with us for quite some time.
We took in a show at the Queens Theater and saw Les Miserables which was phenomenal. The theater is very intimate and small and I doubt that there is a bad seat in the house. The theater architecture was magnificent. The sound and lighting was perfect during the show. We could not have asked for a nicer theater to see Les Miserables.
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