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Friday, September 25, 2009

Les Mis Review Roundup

It's been one week since Les Mis opened at the Schonell last week, SEVEN shows done - it's been energy draining, but it's been so much fun so far. We've had standing ovations, tears have been shed, curtain calls, encores... people are loving it. The word is out and tickets are getting harder and harder to get - with full houses or back row only for some shows.

So here are four rave reviews we've had published about us...

Nigel Munro-Wallis on 612ABC gave us four stars. On air (not in the printed copy) Nigel gave us what I consider the biggest compliment of all from a theatre critic - he has disliked the show Les Miserables for many many years, but we were the ones that finally converted him. I really appreciate that comment. :)
If you have ever enjoyed Les Miserables then get along and see this production. It goes a long way to proving my suspicion that there is a great deal to offer in Brisbane in terms of musical theatre and that there are a significant number of highly talented devotees to the art out there who are doing a great deal to lift the bar with regard to the standard we can expect.

If you can't get out to catch one of the many offerings that are currently showing around town as part of the Brisbane Festival then go and see this. At least it has a descent run, as opposed to so much of what is on offer as part of the festival that only runs for a couple of days.

Well done.
--

Jason Whittaker at Australian Stage Online...
This is a labour of love for many; from the really clever staging (the battle scenes at the barricades are terrific), effective lighting and sound design and dazzling costuming faithful to the revolutionary times, and a tight, well-rehearsed orchestra under the co-batons of Harmony Woollett and Edgar Chan. Experienced director and choreographer Simone de Haas pulls it all together quite seamlessly, efficiently conveying exposition that moves at a swift pace in the first act.

The stage bursts with talent. It is a uniformly excellent cast, right down to each member of the large chorus who really do give it their all.

...

Lovers of musical theatre won’t be disappointed. It’s great fun.

--

Lauren Dillon at Timeoff...
With a cast of voices that would rival any other, an orchestra primed for action and a budget worthy of the requirements of such a production the Schonell Theatre was transformed into nineteenth century France much to the delight of the supportive and appreciative opening night audience.

Director Simone De Haas has outdone herself by being able to wrangle over 20 performers, an orchestra and special effects including gunfire in this mammoth production. Her skill combined with that of co-musical directors Harmony Woollett and Edgar Chan makes for an epic production...
--

From Perform Magazine...
When a theatre company decides to take on a musical of this scale and present it to a paying audience, they want to be very sure that they can come up with the goods. Director Simone de Haas and musical directors Harmony Woollett and Edgar Chan have delivered in spades...

When I saw that Chris Herden was the understudy for the original Sydney season of Phantom of the Opera, as well as having sung with the Queensland Pops Orchestra and Opera Queensland I was relieved. The role of Jean Valjean is so pivotal to the story that a less than professional performance would ruin the whole musical. Herden became Valjean and held the audience in the palm of his hand as he stood on the barricades and sang Bring Him Home. It was one of the finest renditions of this haunting piece that I have heard in either a professional or community production...

The firearms and gunfire in the barricade scene were so realistic that I ducked in my seat every time one of the actors turned toward the audience holding a rifle.

--

DON'T MISS OUT. We're on until the 16th October but don't wait until the last minute to see it. People have seen the show and were initially skeptical about the ticket price and got back on the phone and rebooked to see it again. It's of a quality you'd seen in a professional show at half the price.

http://www.ignatians.com.au for dates and details on how to book.

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