Theatre fans can enjoy one of the best musicals of all time as Cameron Mackintosh’s acclaimed production of Les Misérables continues its five-week run in Bradford.
The production - based on the novel by Victor Hugo - follows the plight of convict Jean Valjean (Killian Donnelly) as he is tirelessly pursued by dedicated police inspector Javert (Nic Greenshields) after ripping up his papers to escape parole. It is set in the times of the French Revolution and features every range of emotions, from love to hate and hope to despair, along with gut-wrenching heartbreak.
As with all musicals, the main draw is the songs. But unlike other musicals, every single one in Les Miserables is first class, with Boublil and Schönberg’s magnificent score featuring the songs I Dreamed a Dream, On My Own, Stars, Bring Him Home, Do You Hear the People Sing?, One Day More, Empty Chairs at Empty Tables, Master Of The House and many more.
Fantine (Katie Hall) performs I Dreamed A Dream spectacularly and only the hardest heart would fail to be moved by her plight.
Valjean and Javert were both fantastic actors and singers - and they worked really well together. Donnelly’s and Greenshields’ excellent performances of Bring Him Home and Stars respectively were both heart-moving and full of raw emotion, despite being difficult songs.
Cosette (Bronwen Hanson) and Marius (Harry Apps) do a great job of portraying a young couple falling in love while Eponine (Tegan Bannister) watches on woefully. Eponine’s version of On My Own was another highlight of the show.
Credit has to go to Rafferty Tobias, who plays Gavroche.
Despite his young age, he does a brilliant job of the role and he’s sure to go far in theatre.
The young Cosette (Amelia Minto) performed Castle on A Cloud beautifully and the young Eponine (Eden Beach) was also good, although she doesn’t feature as much.
The Thénardiers (Lee Ormsby and Sophie Louise Dann) also deserve a mention - the pair was absolutely fantastic and played the roles of over-the-top, raucous lowlifes to perfection. They do bring a bit of humour to lighten up the darkness at times.
In fact, there was nothing to fault about any of the cast, and the musicians were also top-notch.
The show leaves audiences crying - and laughing - many will return again and again.
The show runs at the Alhambra Theatre, Bradford - the only Yorkshire venue on the UK tour - until Saturday, August 10. Tickets from £24.50 (inclusive of booking fees) are limited. Visit www.bradford-theatres.co.uk/venues/the-alhambra-theatre to book.