The Winds of Change, Liverpool’s amateur theatre society, is pleased to announce that it has secured the rights to stage Les Misérables in November 2013. While high school editions of the world renowned musical, based on the 1862 novel by French writer Victor Hugo, have been staged, it is the first time since the musical was first staged in 1985 that amateur theatre companies, such as the Winds of Change, have been able to apply for the full stage production rights.
“We can thank Kristopher Snarby, who for years has pursued the license for this show,” explained Susan Lane, Winds of Change president and the production’s co-director. “He was notified as soon as the rights became available. We’re also excited that he’s agreed to act as the musical director for the show.”
Co-director, Richard Comeau added, “As far as we know at this point, we are the only amateur theatre company, in Nova Scotia, perhaps Atlantic Canada, that will be doing this production.”
Les Misérables, a sung-through musical, meaning there is no spoken dialogue, is set in 19th century France. Jean Valjean, released from 19 years of unjust imprisonment, finds nothing in store for him but mistrust and mistreatment. He breaks his parole in hopes of starting a new life, initiating a life-long struggle for redemption as he is relentlessly pursued by police inspector Javert, who refuses to believe Valjean can change his ways. Finally, during the Paris student uprising of 1832, Javert must confront his ideals after Valjean spares his life and saves that of the student revolutionary who has captured the heart of Valjean's adopted daughter. His world-view shattered, Javert commits suicide, and Valjean at last attains the peace he has sought for so long (MTI).
The musical will be the largest and the most expensive Winds of Change production in its thirty four year history.
Jean Robinson-Dexter, the show’s producer said, “We’re starting to identify leaders for each of the creative teams needed to make this show the spectacle it’s meant to be. From there we’ll start to put the teams together.”
Audition applications and creative team volunteer forms will be made available soon. A Facebook audition page, WOC Les Miserables Auditions, has also been launched, as a tool to communicate with those interested in auditioning or volunteering. Auditions are scheduled for late January and early February, with the intention of announcing the cast on March 1.
Because of the cost of this production, the Winds of Change will also be looking for a title sponsor, patron donations and are investigating grant and foundation funding opportunities, in addition to the usual program advertisement sales. Organizations and businesses interested in supporting the production in any of these capacities can contact Jean Robinson-Dexter at firstname.lastname@example.org or 354-2397.