« From time to time along comes a musical that makes history… not just because it hits the jackpot but because (…) it adds to the artistic dimensions of theatre… spectacular, enchanting, a believable, universally relevant tale provoking laughter, tears – and the uplift of truly great theatre. » – Edward Behr (1985)
March, 6th 2014 was the year anniversary of my first time at the Queen’s Theatre in London, where I saw Les Misérables – THE MUSICAL for the very first time. I have read the book. Several times. And I could almost say I was born with this piece of art in my hands.
In short, I know it by heart and when I first knew there was a musical, I was quite skeptical, not knowing how the original story had been interpreted and so on… but I must admit I was extremely surprised… good surprised! The musical is as much a work of art as the book itself.
But it’s not just any show, like March 6th isn’t just any date… it is the date I came to see the show that saved my soul. I know it will seem silly to some of you to say that a show, a story, words, songs and voices can save a heart from the Devil’s cave… but I promise you there’s never been anything realer.
I fell in love with the musical the same way I fell in love with Hugo’s words. And every time I listen to the songs or read the words of this masterpiece, it’s like falling in love for the first time all over again.
I was having a very tough time in my life and I think this show saved me because the message the story possesses is very deep and revolves around those three notions that are LOVE, HOPE & FIGHT and that have turned (in a good way) my heart upside down.
I could have gone back to the book but I was so lost that I needed something new and as powerful as the original work. This musical has really been my wake-up call. It’s not easy everyday but I think that living according to these 3 little but so beautiful, deep and mighty words help me survive… especially now that I’m back in France.
The most important of these 3 words (though they’re all terribly important!) is, in my opinion, the word LOVE, closely followed by HOPE and FIGHT (it’s hard to detach one from the others anyway; they’re all so very bound to one another!). LOVE because, above everything else, that’s what this show brought me and taught me. Strange again, right? But I don’t believe it is strange; I mean… there are people acting and singing on this stage and these people, these artists gave life to the most beautiful words ever written; they very simply touched my young and depressed heart and soul… and saved it. You know I liked some performances better than others and those cherished one are all gathered and detailed in my review of the show and cast >>HERE<< :)
In the wink of an eye, I felt a lot better… and every time I feel a bit down now, I think of this show, of Hugo’s words, of the 3 life-guiding values of this brilliant masterpiece and of everything this show concretely brought me and… my smile comes back, wiping away my tears.
« To love another person is to see the face of god » – Victor Hugo
It’s crazy, right? How LOVE can change a heart and heal it. It’s beautiful, I think!
And as March is another month of love, I’d like to share my planner’s quote of the day, which describes to perfection my feelings towards Hugo’s book, towards the show and towards the people who entered my life thanks to this show…
« You must look for love wherever it might be, even if that means hours, days, weeks of disappointment and sadness. Because when the moment we set off in search of love, love sets out to meet us. And it saves us. » Paulo Coelho
Enjoy the soundtrack of one of the former London casts!
“Cosette, in her seclusion, like Marius in his, was all ready to take fire. Destiny, with its mysterious and fatal patience, was slowly bringing these two beings near each other, fully charged and all languishing with the stormy electricities of passion,—these two souls which held love as two clouds hold lightning, and which were to meet and mingle in a glace like clouds in a flash.The power of a glance has been so much abused in love stories, that it has come to be disbelieved in. Few people dare now to say that two beings have fallen in love because they have looked at each other. Yet it is in this way that love begins, and in this way only. The rest is only the rest, and comes afterwards. Nothing is more real than these great shocks which two souls give each other in exchanging this spark.
At that particular moment when Cosette unconsciously looked with this glance which so affected Marius, Marius had no suspicion that he also had a glance which affected Cosette.”
― Victor Hugo, Les Misérables