Les Misérables: First Look


Kate Murray

Ensemble members collaborate for a dance number at one of the first rehearsals.

The spring musical, Les Misérables, has been cast, and the theater department is abuzz with excitement. Over 90 students auditioned against snow days and inclement weather, and the tedious casting process resulted in an ensemble of about 50 students. For many of the leads, this is their breakout performance.

“Being cast as Èponine was a shock, I never really thought I’d get it,” Aléjandra Revelez-Poindexter ‘19 said. “The past three years I’ve been only ensemble so this role means quite a lot to me. Since 2012 when the movie came out I have been obsessed with her. She’s an amazing character that carries around an immense amount of pain.”

While Revelez-Poindexter is a veteran of the theater department, for many of the cast members this is only their first or second production – including Quinn Kopelman ‘19, who was cast as the revolutionary leader, Enjolras.

The past three years I’ve been only ensemble so this role means quite a lot to me.”

— Aléjandra Revelez-Poindexter ‘19 (Èponine)

“I was really nervous to audition since I’ve never done anything involving singing or acting before, and I was really only able to because a number of my friends encouraged me,” Kopelman said. “So then to see that risk pay off with a role as cool as Enjolras is a really wonderful feeling.”

While rehearsals for the actors have begun, the musicians and tech crew have a big responsibility ahead of them as well. Director Troy Peters shared information on the equipment that will be involved on the set, including a bridge that spans most of the stage and a two-piece, 20-foot-long barricade.

“The set is going to be larger than we planned,” Peters said. “We were thinking about trying to keep this small, but once we get in there and look at the space, what we have to fill, it’s going to be quite a challenge.”

Last year, the set crew built a functioning turntable for the set of Little Shop of Horrors. While the plan had initially been to reuse the equipment this year, it may now prove impractical for this production.

“We won’t be using the turntable because of the amount of sets that we have to wheel in and wheel off, and that would cause too much of a challenge.”

The opportunity to meet so many new people is really exciting.”

— Quinn Kopelman '19 (Enjolras)

Les Misérables is “a lot of little pieces”: the objects onstage as well as the actors and crew who move and navigate around them. Set changes will happen behind a moving curtain and walls and backdrops will be flying in and out all while the cast is performing. But Peters has faith in the department’s ability to rise to the challenge and keep the show fluid and functional. Not only that, but the cast is entering the process with positivity and enthusiasm.

“Between the actors, pit, and the tech crew, almost all of my best friends are involved in the show,” Kopelman said. “Really, if I didn’t do this show I think I’d constantly be missing my friends over the next few months. And not just that, but the opportunity to meet so many new people is really exciting.”