Friday, June 20, 2014

"Les Miz" Preview!

Next week, I begin rehearsal for 1776.  So much anticipation and buildup since my being cast back in March, and of course I have been busy doing my research and preparation and capturing it in my video blog, "Becoming John Adams."  If you haven't seen the vlog yet, I have created a playlist so you can view all the posts in order.  Click here to view and subscribe on YouTube!

Even as the adventure of 1776 gets underway in earnest, Orlando Shakespeare Theater is sending out excited news items on the casting of the central roles in this season's Les Misérables, in which I will be playing the comic villain Thénardier.  Florida audiences will be delighted that the two leading men of this production are Florida boys!

Michael Hunsaker
The lead role of Jean Valjean will be undertaken by Michael Hunsaker, whose career has taken him from Broadway to national tours (he was in the first national of Ragtime), to an extensive regional theatre career at most of our finest musical theatre companies.  He's a recording artist, a writer who was part of the famous BMI workshop, and is currently pursuing his master's degree in film production.  Quite an accomplished man!

The ruthless zealot Javert will be played by Davis Gaines, the Broadway powerhouse beloved for his portrayal of the Phantom of the Opera, a role which he performed over 2000 times.  His extraordinary career includes co-starring with such greats as Carol Channing, Richard Burton, and Patti Lupone, and performances with every symphony orchestra in the United States.  His accomplishments are many, and his voice is considered one of the greatest ever heard on Broadway.
Davis Gaines

With talents such as these leading the charge to the 'barricade' I have no doubt this, my first Les Misérables, will be something to remember.   I feel very blessed to have the chance to work alongside these distinguished artists!  For now, I begin my adventure as John Adams, leading a cast peopled by equally accomplished and extraordinary performers.  I think I am beginning to understand what people mean by 'living the dream!'

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