Les Miz coming to Manila with Rachelle Ann

(The Philippine Star) - September 17, 2015 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines - Cameron Mackintosh’s acclaimed new production of Boublil & Schönberg’s legendary musical, Les Misérables, will launch the Asian tour in Manila in March 2016 with tickets going on sale on Sept. 29.

“I welcome Les Misérables to Manila for the first time and I am certain that Filipino audiences will be thrilled to see this much-loved and celebrated show at The Theatre of Solaire. The country is home to two of the musical’s leading ladies, in the role of Fantine -— Tony Award-winning star Lea Salonga and Rachelle Ann Go. The Manila season is presented by SMART Infinity,” said Bambi Rivera-Verzo, president of Concertus Manila, one of the producers behind the Manila runs of such world-class musicals as Wicked, Phantom of the Opera, Chicago and the just-concluded Singin’ In The Rain.

Les Misérables (also known as Les Miz) celebrated triumphant seasons in Melbourne, Perth and is currently playing in Sydney. Mackintosh is thrilled to bring the production to Manila. In a statement, the British musical producer said: “Having created my new production over five years ago to celebrate the 25th anniversary of Les Misérables, I’m both thrilled and astonished that the very differently designed, new production of this musical has proved just as successful all over the world as the original production that is about to celebrate its 30th anniversary in London — the only place in the world that you can still see the original production.

“The new production is currently in its second year on Broadway, having broken box-office records across America and in Canada for over three years, with separate companies in Japan, Korea, Spain and currently a huge success in Australia sweeping all the top awards. After its Sydney and Brisbane run, I’m delighted to be bringing this new version to Manila in March, with a wonderful cast that includes the current London star playing Fantine, acclaimed Philippine actress Rachelle Ann Go — who received enormous acclaim when I took her to London to appear as Gigi in my hugely successful new production of Miss Saigon.

“Over the last 25 years, I have had a wonderfully rewarding relationship with Filipino talent, introducing the best of them to audiences around the world — so I’m thrilled that this time, one of my productions can be seen in its full splendor in Manila,” Mackintosh said.

Joining Rachelle Ann, following his recent Australian Helpmann Award win as the iconic Jean Valjean, is Simon Gleeson. Valjean’s lifelong antagonist Javert will be played by Earl Carpenter, direct from his performance of the role in the Broadway company of Les Misérables.

One of the world’s greatest musicals, the new production of the much-loved blockbuster features glorious modernized staging, orchestrations and dazzlingly reimagined scenery inspired by the paintings of Victor Hugo.

The reviews have been glowing. “A five star hit, astonishingly powerful,” according to The Times UK. Sydney’s Daily Telegraph described it as “a dynamic, enthralling experience... this new production will elevate emotions in ways previously unknown.” La Vanguardia in Madrid declared it as “one of the most memorable productions of the last 25 years.”

Set against the backdrop of 19th-century revolutionary France, Les Misérables is a much-loved blockbuster musical, which has been seen by over 70 million people worldwide in 42 countries and in 22 languages, making it one of the most popular musicals of all time. Having won more than 100 major awards around the world, it has been hailed as the most stirring, moving musical ever. Based on Victor Hugo’s classic novel, it is an epic story about the survival of the human spirit. The magnificent score of Les Misérables includes the classic 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.

Smart Infinity members and Visa cardholders could be among the first to watch Les Misérables when it hits Philippine shores for its limited run early next year. Smart Infinity members are offered first dibs to ticket-purchasing and discount offers from Sept. 29 to Oct. 29. Each subscription to Smart Infinity Plan 5000 or Plan 8000 entitles the member to two VIP orchestra tickets, a Samsung Galaxy Note 5 and PAL Mabuhay Miles, complete with the free download of the entire soundtrack of Les Misérables via Spinnr. Existing members also enjoy priority booking and a 10-percent discount on tickets purchased within the said period. Visa credit, debit and prepaid cardholders can purchase tickets first with 10 percent discount in the Visa Entertainment pre-sale, also from Sept. 29 until Oct. 29. Tickets are available at Ticketworld.com.ph and all TicketWorld outlets.

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