"Every man must choose his way"
The encore of the 25th Anniversary concert of Les Misérables saw a series of nice nods to the show’s enduring history and those who were responsible for its creation. Bringing onstage the vast majority of the original cast from the Barbican increased the number of people on the stage to ridiculous levels, but allowed for two great musical moments. First a four-way version of Bring Him Home, joining together Valjeans past – Colm Wilkinson – and present – Alfie Boe, Simon Bowman (from the Queen’s) and John Owen-Jones (from the tour) which was sung beautifully, with solos blending into each other and lines of paired harmony. Giving Boe a key-change just confirmed the conspiracy theories in my head but it was nice to see that Wilkinson was given the final, goose-bump-inducing note.
And then One Day More as sung by the original cast was lots of fun. Seeing faces that have become familiar to me now – Rebecca Caine, Frances Ruffelle, Roger Allam, Alun Armstrong – as well as Michael Ball, in this context was really interested and got to me thinking who of the younger actors performing today will still be tirelessly working in the industry 25 years from now. It was perhaps unsurprising that Patti LuPone wasn’t there to reprise her Fantine (though I may be being unfair, she could well have been working on Broadway) but I was surprised to see that the original Enjolras was missing, as David Burt has been a near constant presence on the stage this year.