There is nothing like enjoying something so much that every time you encounter it you enjoy is even more.
I was introduced to Les Mis in High School. We didn't read it. We didn't watch the movie. I have actually never seen the 1998 movie. It was the skit we did before the Thespian Society inductions that peaked my interest. I have had a love affair with it since that never seems to fade. It grows!
It's been about 10 years since I have seen the play. The Broadway show closed in 2003. I probably saw it in 2001. I was in a rush to get there before it closed. I made it.
I judge plays the same way I do movies or any other performance, I have to get lost in it. It has to make me forget where I am and that I am viewing something. When this does happen I tend to get this trance look on my face. I snap myself out of it from time to time because it's not always the most attractive trance face.
Usually when I go into a show knowing the music I wind up not caring for the show and more likely to want to sing along in my head and not pay attention. Les Mis kept me entertained regardless. Each time I listen to the soundtrack I realize something new. The most recent being that the first act and the second act musically repeat each other. Lovely Ladies and Turning can be played on top of one another. Both completely different songs representing different stages of the French Revolution. Not to mention both Fantine and Jean Valjean's final songs also can play on top of each other. It probably took me so long to realize this because I tend to listen to Act 2 more then Act 1. However, realizing this now give me a big geeky high. I even sing them on top of each other. Squeal!
Tonight I have learned if I put Les Mis on while trying to accomplish something like putting away laundry I am apt to wandering away and forgetting about my laundry. It's been almost 15 years since being introduced to Les Mis and it still puts me in a happy lost place. FYI: although I have not seen it, The Secret Garden gets me to the same quiet place.
So back in May when "Snow White and The Huntsman" came to theaters. The trailer for "Les Mis" played. I remember hearing "I dreamed a dream in time gone by" and was confused. My brain couldn't compute what I was hearing. Sadly, the first thing that popped into my head was ABBA's "I Have a Dream" from "Mamma Mia." "But the tigers come at night..." OMG it's LES MIS! Eye's peeled open, glued to the screen. I don't care for Anne Hathaway, but I am not going to pretend that she doesn't come across as an excellent choice for Fantine. I think seeing that trailer was why I liked Snow White.
It's even strange to me why I love this show so much. I don't care for history. It's not something that interests me. I don't study history. I never excelled at it in school either. I understood it, but don't expect me to memorize the events and dates of the Civil War. However, Les Mis is all about the French Revolution. Love, war, family, loss... it's just so good.
I can't wait for the movie to come out in December. I keep hearing rumors of a new Broadway revival, but their website shows that it is still on US tour, in London, and Madrid. I high recommend you check it out if it's playing near you.
I will read the book one day.