Les Misérables Review

Thrilling performance received standing ovation

Date published: Thu 5 Dec 2019   Author: HLH   Category: Performing Arts   Share: Share on facebookShare on TwitterShare on MySpaceShare by Email

First Night Review

Les Misérables: School Edition TM

(May contain some spoilers if you don't know the story)

Playing to a sold-out audience, the school production of Les Misérables was a delightful, colourful and vibrant production involving pupils from Year 7 - 13.

Act 1 was directed by Subject Leader for Drama, Mrs Bart-Williams, and Act 2 by Drama teacher Mr Comiskey.

Harry Collier-Smith shone in the lead role of Jean Valjean, word perfect and powerful in his delivery. Of particular note was his stunning performance of 'Bring Him Home' sung in a register which many would struggle to achieve.

Tega Amroe, playing Valjean's nemesis Javert, brilliantly brought the brooding, menacing police chief to the stage with a solid vocal and an air of aloofness.

Sadie Kightley powerfully brought Fantine to life with a strong vocal performance conveying the character's misery in her short-lived life, whilst her devotion to her child shone through.

Matthew Goodeve delighted with a brief role as the Bishop of Digne followed by Bamatabois.

Cosette played by Georgia Bryson had a light touch to her performance, effortlessly pairing with Valjean, Marius-played by Teddy Pope,  and Eponine played by Freya Demmon at different times throughout the performance.

Teddy Pope had a firm grasp of his part, with a very creditable rendition of some very demanding music and stage timings. Who needs Eddie Redmayne when they have Teddy Pope?

Freya Demmon who is in posession of a beautiful voice, movingly conveyed the anguish of unrequited love while selflessly helping Marius.

The smaller, but vitally important part of Enjolras, was played by Finn Lihoreau who brought the frustrations and passions of the leader of the revolutionaries vivdly to life, dramatically leading the troops, fighting the enemy and wonderfully dying whilst holding the flag.

Of course no perfomance of Les Misérables is complete without Monsieur et Madam Thenardier and Thomas Woods and Lois Gilder were brilliantly funny, lively and 'owned the stage' during their scenes.

The production of the show was very slick, with scene changes, lighting, and presentation absolutely spot on. The choreography, directed by Mrs Miles was light and well rehearsed.

Managing so many radio mics gave the technical team, led by the School's sound & lighting technician Joe Turone a run for their money, which they did with great professionalism.

A whole team of helpers worked hard the entire evening backstage, supervising students, doing hair & make-up, helping with costume changes and prop changes.

Finally, the entire production hinged on the quality of the music, performed by live musicians in the form of the TBSHS Pit Band,  led by Subject Leader Mr Emery, supported by music teacher Mr Newsome and a group of very able student and staff musicians.

School musicians, all from Yrs 10-13, who shone included Luis Obeng on Cello, Owen Lee on Trumpet, William Worthy on French Horn and Jonny Brewer who had his very able hands full on percussion. Ed Moulton on violin and Ellie Cronin on woodwind also made up the very professional ensemble.

The audience were thrilled by the performance, rising as one in a standing ovation at the end.

Hours of work have gone into this production by staff and students, if you are coming to watch on Friday evening, you are in for a treat!