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Photo Flash: LES MISERABLES Comes To Pittsburgh 7/7-7/19 At The Benedum Center


Experience a timeless story of revolution and love when Pittsburgh CLO presents the smash-hit musical Les Misérables for the first time, July 7 through July 19 at the Benedum Center in the heart of Pittsburgh's Cultural District. Currently the longest-running musical in history, Les Misérables has been seen by more than 54 million people around the world.

For nearly 25 years, Les Misérables has touched countless audiences with the powerful story of Jean Valjean and his life-long struggle for redemption. From the prisons and taverns of 19th Century France to the streets of Paris during the student revolt, this deeply-moving musical brings to life Victor Hugo's eternal message of compassion and hope. Set to a soaring and uplifting score, Les Misérables is an emotionally-charged Tony ® Award-winning blockbuster that will leave audiences breathless, featuring pop-opera classics such as "One Day More," "Master of the House" and "Bring Him Home."

Robert Cuccioli (Javert) made his Broadway debut as Javert in Les Misérables and earned a Tony® nomination for his role in Jekyll and Hyde. His previous Pittsburgh CLO credits include The Sound of Music, Funny Girl, Guys and Dolls, Bells are Ringing and The Pajama Game. He also directed Jekyll and Hyde for Pittsburgh CLO.

Jacquelyn Piro Donovan (Fantine) returns to Pittsburgh CLO for the sixth time. She has appeared on Broadway in Miss Saigon and Les Misérables and has performed in Pittsburgh CLO's productions of Seven Brides for Seven Brothers, 1776, Hello, Dolly!, She Loves Me and Gypsy.

Kevin Earley (Enjolras) makes his Pittsburgh CLO debut in Les Misérables. His Broadway credits include A Tale of Two Cities, Thoroughly Modern Millie and Les Misérables. He will also appear in Pittsburgh CLO's production of Into the Woods later this season.

Tim Hartman (Thénardier) has appeared on Broadway in A Tale of Two Cities, and the Encore production of Finian's Rainbow. A stable on the Pittsburgh theater scene, Mr. Hartman has performed in numerous Pittsburgh CLO productions, including 17 appearances in A Musical Christmas Carol. He has also appeared in Pittsburgh CLO's Annie, Camelot and Funny Girl and in the films "The Silence of the Lambs," "The Piano Lesson," and "The Mothman Prophecies."

Fred Inkley (Jean Valjean) takes the Pittsburgh CLO stage for the first time. Among other credits, he has portrayed Jean Valjean in the Broadway and National Tour productions of Les Misérables. He also has appeared on Broadway in A Tale of Two Cities and The Boys from Syracuse.

Kate Loprest (Cosette) made her Pittsburgh CLO debut in Swing! earlier this season. Her Broadway credits include Hairspray, Xanadu and The Drowsy Chaperone. She has performed in the National Tour of Wicked and Happy Days: A New Musical for Paper Mill Playhouse.

Matthew Scott (Marius) is a Carnegie Mellon alumnus returning to Pittsburgh CLO. He appeared earlier this season in Swing! and previously performed in the National Tour of Dr. Dolittle and 1776. He has also starred in Jersey Boys on Broadway.

Ashley Spencer (Eponine) takes the Pittsburgh CLO stage for the first time after appearing on Broadway in Grease and in Hairspray and in the National Tour of Barbie Live in Fairytopia. She was a finalist on NBC's "Grease: You're the One That I Want."

Sally Wilfert (Madame Thénardier) appears at Pittsburgh CLO for the first time. She has appeared on Broadway in Assassins, The Adventures of Tom Sawyer and Disney's King David. Ms. Wilfert will also appear in Pittsburgh CLO's Barry Manilow's Copacabana as Gladys.

Victoria Kathryn Huston (Young Eponine) is a 9-year-old student at Buffalo Elementary School in Sarver, PA. She performed in this season's Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat and in CLO's Oklahoma! in 2007.

Rachel Mracna (Young Cosette) is a 10-year-old student at McKnight Elementary. She has appeared in Pittsburgh CLO's A Musical Christmas Carol and in several CLO Academy summer camp productions. Rachel recently appeared in Stage 62's production of Oliver! and on Radio Disney's national broadcast.

Joseph Serafini (Gavroche) is an 11-year-old student at Neil Armstrong Middle School in Bethel Park. He performed in this season's Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat and in Peter Pan in 2008 and Oklahoma! in 2007. Joseph has played Tiny Tim in Pittsburgh CLO's A Musical Christmas Carol for the past four years. This October, he will appear with legendary performer Shirley Jones and conductor Marvin Hamlisch in The Pittsburgh Symphony "Pops" presentation of Shirley Jones, Marvin & The Music Man.

Barry Ivan (Director/Choreographer) recently directed Les Misérables for North Shore Music Theatre, where he served as artistic director and executive producer. He directed Smokey Joe's Café for Pittsburgh CLO in 2008 and has directed and choreographed numerous other Pittsburgh CLO productions, including The Full Monty, A Little Night Music, Company, Anything Goes, Miss Saigon and West Side Story.

Tom Helm (Music Director) returns for his 14th season with Pittsburgh CLO. On Broadway, he was the musical director of Les Misérables, Me and My Girl and the revival of Brigadoon. Mr. Helm was also the musical director for the First National Tour of Cats and conducted Cats on Broadway early in its run. Mr. Helm is also the resident music director at Paper Mill Playhouse.

When Victor Hugo's Les Misérables was published in 1862, it generated more excitement than any book in history. Alain Boublil and his long time partner Claude-Michel Schönberg transformed Les Misérables into a musical theater work that has become almost as famous as the novel from which it was adapted. After two years of work, a two-hour recording of the songs was produced. Released in 1980, the recording sold 260,000 copies.

In 1982, Peter Ferago, a young director who was greatly impressed with the recording of Les Misérables, brought it to the attention of British producer Cameron Mackintosh. He asked poet and drama critic James Fenton to create the English translation with Boublil and Schönberg, and persuaded Trevor Nunn to direct with John Caird.

Les Misérables originally opened in London at the Barbican Theatre on Oct. 8, 1985, before transferring to the West End's Palace Theatre on Dec. 4, 1985. The original Broadway production opened on March 12, 1987, at the Broadway Theatre, winning seven Tony® Awards that season, including Best Musical. The show went on to play a total of 6,680 performances. It moved to its current home at the Queen's Theatre in 2004. When it celebrated its 21st birthday there on Oct. 8, 2006, it became the world's longest-running musical, surpassing the record previously held by Cats in London's West End.

Les Misérables has been seen by more than 56 million people worldwide in 42 countries and in 21 languages. There have been 34 cast recordings of Les Misérables, including the multi-platinum London cast recording and the Grammy® Award-winning Broadway cast and complete symphonic albums. The video of the 10th Anniversary Royal Albert Hall Gala Concert has sold nearly two million copies worldwide, making it one of the best-selling musical videos ever in the U.K. There are more than 2,000 productions of the Les Misérables School's Edition scheduled or being performed by more than 100,000 school children in the U.K., U.S. and Australia, making it the most successful musical ever produced in schools.

Pittsburgh CLO is one of only 12 professional theater companies to receive permission to produce Les Misérables in 2009 before the rights close because of an upcoming National Tour set to launch in late 2010.

Victor Hugo (Original Novel) was one of France's most distinguished writers: a poet, dramatist and novelist of the romantic school of the 19th century. His most famous works in English are his two epic novels, The Hunchback of Notre Dame (1831) and Les Misérables (1862), both of which have been adapted many times for stage and screen. He was exiled in 1851 by Napoleon III, but returned to France in 1870, and his final years were marked by public veneration.

Alain Boublil (Conception, Book and Original French text) worked in music publishing before writing his first lyrics for the French pop song world. After discovering the existence of musical theater, he started working with Claude-Michel Schönberg. Fore more than 20 years, their partnership gave birth to La Revolution Française, Les Misérables, Miss Saigon and Martin Guerre. He has also produced with Schönberg the major cast albums for all their shows.

Claude-Michel Schönberg (Music and Book) began his career as a singer, writer and producer of popular songs. He wrote the musical score of La Révolution Française, Les Misérables, Miss Saigon and Martin Guerre. Mr. Schönberg also supervised overseas productions of Les Misérables and Miss Saigon and co-produced several international cast albums of his shows. In 2001, he composed his first ballet score, Wuthering Heights, which was created by the Northern Ballet Theatre in September 2002. The Pirate Queen is his sixth complete score.

Herbert Kretzmer (Lyrics) was a fulltime London journalist when Cameron Mackintosh invited him to join the Les Misérables team preparing the show's West End production in 1985. A part-time songwriter, he contributed regular lyrics for the BBC's famous satire series "That Was the Week That Was" and had also written lyrics for the French singer Charles Aznavour ("Yesterday When I Was Young," "She").

Jean-Marc Natel (Original French text) studied art at the Beaux Arts in Toulon before turning to poetry and has published two volumes of his poems. In 1968, he moved to Paris where he met Alain Boublil, who introduced him to songwriting with the task of co-writing the lyrics for Les Misérables. Since then, he has written songs for a variety of artists and some of his poetry has recently been set to music by Franck Pourcel.

James Fenton (Additional Text) was educated at the Durham Choristers' School, Repton and Magdalen College, Oxford, where he won the Newdigate Prize for Poetry. He has worked as a political and literary journalist, drama critic, book reviewer, war correspondent and columnist. Mr. Fenton was made Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature in 1983 and he was Professor of Poetry at Oxford from 1994 to 1999.

Tickets for Les Misérables start at $24.50 and are available online at, by calling 412-456-6666 or at the Box Office at Theater Square. Groups of 10 or more may call 412-325-1582.

Photo Flash: LES MISERABLES Comes To Pittsburgh 7/7-7/19 At The Benedum Center
Barry Ivan and Robert Cuccioli

Photo Flash: LES MISERABLES Comes To Pittsburgh 7/7-7/19 At The Benedum Center
Fred Inkley

Photo Flash: LES MISERABLES Comes To Pittsburgh 7/7-7/19 At The Benedum Center
Barry Ivan, Tim Hartman, and Sally Wilfert

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