Les Misérables is a sung-through musical based on the novel Les Misérables by French poet and novelist Victor Hugo.
The Broadway production opened 12 March 1987 and ran until 18 May 2003, closing after 6,680 performances. It is the fifth longest-running Broadway show in history and was the second-longest at the time. The show was nominated for 12 Tony Awards and won eight, including Best Musical and Best Original Score.
Subsequently, numerous tours and international and regional productions have been staged, as well as concert and broadcast productions. Several recordings have also been made. A Broadway revival opened in 2006 at the Broadhurst Theatre and closed in 2008. The show was placed first in a BBC Radio 2 listener poll of Britain's "Number One Essential Musicals" in 2005, receiving more than forty percent of the votes.
A film version directed by Tom Hooper was released at the end of 2012 to generally positive reviews as well as numerous awards nominations, winning three Academy Awards, three Golden Globe Awards and four British Academy Film Awards (BAFTA). [Wikipedia]
It has music by Claude-Michel Schönberg, original French lyrics by Alain Boublil and Jean-Marc Natel, with an English-language libretto by Herbert Kretzmer.
Set in early 19th-century France, it is the story of Jean Valjean, a French peasant, and his quest for redemption after serving nineteen years in jail for having stolen a loaf of bread for his sister's starving child.
Valjean decides to break his parole and start his life anew after a kindly bishop inspires him by a tremendous act of mercy, but he is relentlessly tracked down by a police inspector named Javert.
Along the way, Valjean and a slew of characters are swept into a revolutionary period in France, where a group of young idealists make their last stand at a street barricade.
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