*Possible Spoiler.*I've always felt Javert's Suicide has so much potential for a creative staging moment (and yet have never been truly thrilled by the way it's been done). Has anyone seen any particularly noteworthy renditions? I've always wanted to see a creative use of wires, with him rising up with some sort of projected background or something similar.
I'm not sure in understanding your idea of how you want it to look on stage. But the current revival on Broadway does use a projected background and javert falls and goes toward the screen
Yeah, the current Broadway production has him suspended in midair with a projection in the background that does a fantastic job - it's one of the best parts of the show. Based on your description of what you would like to see, it seems to be a pretty close match.
The simplicity of the stagecraft in the original staging is what made it so magical.
How did it work in the original production? Unfortunately was too young to have seen it! Love the current revival's staging.
The version I saw in the mid-90s had Javert standing on the edge of a bridge, and then he lets go of the bridge and the bridge flies upward, making it look like he's falling from it. It was pretty effective, although I've never seen a really good depiction of him actually hitting the water. One staging I saw had him standing onstage while the lighting swirled around him, but it didn't really come off. Plus, there's no way to have a sound effect of rushing water and not have it sound like a flushing toilet!
lol how is it a spoiler that Javert dies? the book is from 154 years ago.
"Based on your description of what you would like to see, it seems to be a pretty close match."Really? Interesting, I've seen the new version of the tour, but not the new Broadway production. I figured they'd be pretty much the same. I don't recall wires on tour."lol how is it a spoiler that Javert dies? the book is from 154 years ago."Inevitably there always seems to be someone who doesn't know, and then they post to say it was spoiled. So I decided to err on the side of caution.
The current staging reminds me too much of Bobby Strong's death. Would've been more effective if I'd never seen Urinetown.The best non-replica staging I ever saw was at Sacramento Music Circus, which is in the round. Brad Little fell backwards onto a mattress in the dark after clambering onto a railing that was set in an aisle.
When I saw the new version on tour, I was never able to see the device that carries Javert because of the lighting. On Broadway, I'm always able to fully see the whole contraption going toward him, going up and carrying him back. Don't know why they can't get the lighting right at the Imperial.
My problem with the current production is the perspective. It starts with him facing us and he jumps off the bridge and suddenly we're above him watching him fall. It would have been so much more amazing if they had him standing and then shift the perspective to where we are looking at him from the top and then he jumps. They did it in Tarzan, with the shipwreck at the beginning.
No, you're correct.
I've only seen it in London last year, and I remember it as stated by Justin D - he was just rolling around with light swirling around him to replicate his fall. Now I really would like to see some of these other variations as described!
Right; London still uses the Nunn/Caird staging.
Phantom4ever said: "When I saw the new version on tour, I was never able to see the device that carries Javert because of the lighting. On Broadway, I'm always able to fully see the whole contraption going toward him, going up and carrying him back. Don't know why they can't get the lighting right at the Imperial. "The first few times I saw it, early in the run, I could never see it. The last couple times I went (March maybe?) it was relatively easy to see, and I think it was because there was less smoke and fog on stage. The lighting remained the same, but without all the fog for the lights to bounce off of and hide it, it's pretty clear. They really do need to get back to using the fog machines pretty heavily.
I saw an "alternative staging" in a regional theatre which did not have the bridge, and had a suicide by gunshot instead. While as a literary purist I was a bit annoyed by this, there was something chilling about the moment as a dead-behind-the-eyes Javert methodically loaded his gun, while singing the "I am reaching, but I fall" portion of the song.
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