North Carolina Theatre Opens LES MISERABLES Tonight

North Carolina Theatre Opens LES MISERABLES Tonight

North Carolina Theatre (NCT), the region's premier producer of professional Broadway musicals, in association with Broadway Series South, is excited to announce that casting has begun for their February 2014 production of LES MISERABLES directed by Dave Clemmons which will play at Raleigh Memorial Auditorium in the Duke Energy Center for the Performing Arts. This will be the theatre's first time producing this timeless classic.

Cast in the role of "Fantine" is Raleigh's own Lauren Kennedy, a role she played on Broadway in 2002/03. Kennedy's daughter Riley Campbell will be joining her onstage in the role of "Cosette," a fourth-grader and student at NC Theatre's Conservatory making her theatrical debut in the role. Lauren Kennedy's other Broadway credits include "Lady of the Lake" in Monty Python's Spamalot, Sunset Boulevard with Glenn Close, and Side Show as "Daisy Hilton." Her extensive resume also includes "Cinderella" at the New York City Opera and "Nellie Forbush" in South Pacific in London's West End. Lauren has appeared on the NCT stage many times, including starring roles in Evita (2011 & 1993), Annie Get Your Gun (2008) and Joseph & the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat (1998). She currently serves as the Artistic Director at Theatre Raleigh.

Craig Schulman has been cast in the role of "Jean Valjean". This will be his fourth production at NCT, having previously appeared as Tevye in Fiddler On The Roof ('97), Archibald in The Secret Garden ('98) and Father in Children Of Eden ('03). Widely recognized from the PBS broadcast of The 10th Anniversary: LES MISERABLES, he has portrayed Jean Valjean in four different companies in three countries for more than 2,000 performances.

In the role of "Javert" is Chuck Wagner, a role he played on Broadway. Other Broadway credits include Into the Woods and Beauty and the Beast, in addition to a long list of regional and national tour appearances. He's also well-known for his roles on General Hospital, One Life to Live, All My Children and As the World Turns.

NC Theatre is also proud to announce fourteen students from their North Carolina Theatre Conservatory in North Raleigh who will be appearing in the production, including English Bernhardt in the role of "Eponine." She's previously appeared on our stage as Louisa in The Sound of Music and the title role in Annie. Thirteen year-old Reed Shannon will appear as "Gavroche."

Creative team includes Artistic Director Casey Hushion, Producer Carolee Baxter, Musical Director Edward G. Robinson, Associate Director/Choreographer Melanie Lockyer and Director Dave Clemmons. Dave Clemmons returns to his roots with this production, having performed in Les Mis on Broadway and played the role of "Jean Valjean" in the tour for two years. Dave is a visiting professor at the acclaimed Elon University Musical Theatre Program and in-demand teacher/lecturer at master classes across the country. He's also the founder of his own casting company, and producing Partner for StylesFour Productions. StylesFour has been producers/investors for the Broadway productions of Once (Tony Award-Best Musical), Driving Miss Daisy (starring James Earl Jones and Vanessa Redgrave) and Spring Awakening (Tony Award- Best Musical).

Based on Victor Hugo's classic novel, LES MISERABLES is an epic and uplifting story about the survival of the human spirit. The magnificent score of LES MISERABLES 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.

LES MISERABLES originally opened in London at the Barbican Theatre on 8 October 1985, transferred to the Palace Theatre on 4 December 1985 and moved to the Queen's Theatre on 3 April 2004. The production has played to more than 55 million people. When LES MISERABLES celebrated its 21st London birthday on 8 October 2006, it became the world's longest-running musical. There have been 33 cast recordings of "LES MISERABLES", including the multi-platinum London cast recording and the Grammy Award-winning Broadway cast and complete symphonic albums.

For tickets to NC Theatre's production of LES MISERABLES, visit www.NCTheatre.com or call Ticketmaster at 800-745-3000. For groups of 10 or more, call 919-831-6941 x5204. Also coming up this season: WE WILL ROCK YOU December 3-8, DRIVING MISS DAISY May 2-11 AND DISNEY'S THE LITTLE MERMAID July 29-August 3, 2014.

Photo Credit: Curtis Brown

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