“It is such a little sentence – “Let’s do Les Mis”. A few hundred hours of rehearsals later and here we are.” Director Claire Camble-Hutchins echoed the thoughts of everyone involved, but all the hard work was certainly worth it. The Canford production of Les Misérables, staged over four evenings in the penultimate week of the Christmas Term, will certainly live on in the memories of all who were fortunate enough to get tickets to see such a spellbinding show.
With a cast of over 50 pupils on stage, over 20 musicians in the orchestra and numerous crew back stage and in production, this was one of the most ambitious musicals undertaken in the Layard for many years.
Reviewer John Newth commented: “It was a privilege to watch this superb production … From the chorus, clearly immersed in the story and in their contribution to it … to the magnificent set, including the lighting design crucial to create the atmosphere of this show … to the very accomplished orchestra … It is clear that no detail was too small to escape the director’s attention, that her cast worked willingly for her and, most importantly, that she showed them what fun and satisfaction can be got from appearing in a production as good as this one.” He also gave great credit to musical director Ruth Partington, saying “Each of the principals had at least one big solo, and there was not a weak link among them … some of the recitative is quite difficult in pitch and timing, but I was not aware of one foot put wrong.”
Many congratulations to everyone involved in a production which so many of the audience claimed afterwards would not have been out of place on a West End stage.