Les Mis Collection

In today’s collection, I decided to talk about my collection of Les Mis-related things I have collected over the years.

First up are the three playbills from Greenville, Central Piedmont Community College, and the West End. The phenomenal community college production was in 2013, the epic West End production was in 2015 with Adam Bayjou as Jean Valjean, and the powerful Greenville production was in 2017 with Talia Simone Robinson as Eponine. So that shows that my Greenville and West End productions was home to an understudy. The West End playbill is signed by Adam Bayjou and while watching the show, I completely forgot I was watching an understudy because was that good as Jean Valjean.

The soundtrack- I first owned the Original Broadway soundtrack in 2013. I love listening to the songs on that soundtrack. They are so brilliant and well-crafted that the complement the characters and story so perfectly. The songs are one of the biggest reasons why I love Les Mis. Even the songs alone can be powerful.

The book- I first read the unabridged book in 2015. I used my knowledge of the musical to get through the book. That helped me understand what was going on so I could picture the songs at certain moments of the book and wrote in the songs. I inserted my knowledge of the musical into the book and put what I learned from the book into the musical. While there are slight differences, I feel like the musical is quite faithful to the book.

The Stage to Screen book- I got this for Christmas one year from the sister. It talks about the history of the musical, which gives some info about Victor Hugo. It talks about how the musical was created all the way to knowledge about the movie musical.

The three tickets- yes I am crazy, but I ended up keeping the tickets from all three productions. At CPCC, I sat in row Q towards the center and I also sat I believe in the back of the Mezzanine and the back of the Orchestra. In the West End, I sat nine rows back from the stage. In Greenville, I sat in the balcony towards the center.

The Program- in summer of 2016, I went to my first Les Mis party. It was a surprise so I did not dress up as a character that time around. My mom’s friend knew a friend who knew someone who played Jean Valjean so it was arranged that I would this program and he signed the program on a picture of him as Jean Valjean.

The two filers-There are two filer-like things in this picture. One of them is talking about the CPCC production and the other is a filer dealing with the West End production.

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The Poster- the poster was something else I bought at the Queens Theatre. It is currently having up in my room in Charlotte.

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These two T-Shirts- The gray one I got at the Queens Theatre when I saw the musical in the West End. The red one was a T-Shirt my friends made for me on my 22nd birthday.

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The Movie- Another Les Mis thing I have is the musical movie. That movie is what gave me my first full experience of the musical. I first watched this in December of 2012, but at the end of it I did not know if I liked it or not. I was shocked and confused at the idea of it being a tragedy since I had no idea that tragic musicals even exist so I had a hard time paying attention to what was going on in the movie. When I actually gave it a second chance, I was able to calm down and began to notice something special about the musical. I have seen this movie several times and yet each time I still tear up. Without this movie, I wouldn’t have developed a passion for musicals or wouldn’t have become a true fan of Les Mis.

The 25th anniversary concert-I first saw this movie around December of 2013. I have seen it more than once and I love this film. I do not watch it as much as the movie due to it being 3 hrs, but I still have watched it quite a bit and still affected by it. IMG_1531.JPG

So I have quite an impressive collection of Les Mis things.

 

 

 

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Why Do I Want a Strong Emotional Connection in a Musical?

Having an emotional connection in a musical is very important. It allows you to care about the characters and makes you want to go on their journeys. Usually a musical becomes meaningful when you find an emotional connection. An emotional connection is why negative emotions are worth feeling because it shows that you care about what is happening to the characters. An emotional connection helps develop empathy. An emotional connection allows you to trust the show enough and that allows you to appreciate the different emotions you are feeling.

Why Do You Want an Emotional Connection in a Musical?

Why Do I Want The Positive and Negative Emotions in the Songs In a Musical?

Finally, I will be talking about the songs. Musical songs are incredible and capable of so much. One thing I definitely want in the songs are the positive and negative emotions.

The positive emotions naturally feel good. They also are the strongest. Excitement, love, and joy are the main positive emotions. They happen in two ways: through the musical itself and the experience. Excitement is that kind of emotion that likes to happen during dance numbers and tends to start the show due to the overture. They just naturally work in a musical. Love is a very common musical emotion because in just about every musical, there is always romance and it is a beautiful emotion. So love feels good and is a very beautiful emotion, which is also part of the negative emotions. These emotions in some situations are easier to notice than the negative emotions.

But what about the negative emotions in the songs? Those are much harder to describe why I want them. Those two main emotions are sad and heartbreak and love as well. They are going to hurt in a musical, but at the same time, they give a positive response. Musicals that happen to have sad or heartbreaking songs that are strong enough tend to be the complex musicals. In addition, those that have those songs that are strong enough tend to be the most realistic and it tends to show up in musicals. Love is part of the batch as well due to breakups and unrequited love situations. Heartbreaking and sad songs tend to be these beautiful songs. They can make you cry and can be so powerful that they can give you goosebumps. Of course, these emotions are going to hurt, but when you fall in love with those type of songs, you slowly fall in love with the songs and is connected tot he emotion connection you end up feeling. I began to understand the negative emotions starting in middle school and now as a college student, they truly matured and are more capable than ever before and are more wonderful to feel.  Still it is quite hard to describe why I love feeling the negative emotions in the first place.

Why do You Want the Positive and Negative emotions in the Songs in Musicals?

Why Do I Want Complexity in A Musical?

Musicals can either be complex or simple. But I tend to lean towards the complex ones. But why is it important for complexity to be a part of a musical. Complexity is how you get conflict. It is where there is more to be discovered as time goes on. There tends to be sub-plots during the story as well. Complexity has this type of texture involved. Since complexity is where conflict tends to show up the best, it is also how you get the negative emotions. Complex musicals are fun to discover new things in. The sub-plots make you see so much more. Sometimes it can be hard to tell if a musical is complex, but the sub-plots are one way to notice. If there are multiple sub-plots, the show is for sure complex. Complexity also comes from characters because there is a lot to them.

Why do you Want Complexity in a Musical?

Why Do I Want Romance in a Musical?

Romance, the theme in musicals that people either love or hate. Romance is the biggest theme found in the world of musicals. But why do I want it in a musical? A lot of times on my blog I have explained why, but will talk about it again.

Romance is an emotion that translates well to song. It creates these beautiful musical songs. There is a high chance that when you see a new musical that romance will show up. Romance actually can add texture to a musical and that happens whenever romance is shown through the nature of a love triangle. In musicals, characters tend to “fall in love at first sight”, but I don’t mind that because if you think about it, a musical only has two to three hours to tell the story. Due to romance being expected in a musical, it is a wonderful emotion to feel. The couples’ main song is the moment you realize the two have fallen in love. Love songs even range from the breakup and unrequited love songs, which are beautiful songs as well.

 

Why do You Want Romance in a Musical?

Why do I want Spectacle or Dance in a Musical?

In my opinion, having spectacle and dance in a musical is adding something very special.  It make a musical even more wonderful to watch. Spectacle and dance are wonderful things to look at. It means looking at beautiful costumes, wonderful dance moves, circus elements, a colorful and fun set and so much more. I discovered spectacle and dance growing up. Just like comedy, dance and spectacle are known to be part of a musical. It gives a musical a kind of “wow” factor and makes you feel excited in a beautiful way. You can see flips on stage, boys dancing on newspapers, making something magical out of a silly dance and all sorts of fun things.

Dance and spectacle are things I have loved in musicals for as long as I can remember. Dance in my opinion is a type of spectacle. The dance and spectacle is one of the hugest reasons why I love musicals.

Why do you love spectacle and dance in a musical?