A Music Director's Epic Tale: Les Miserables

Chapter 8 : Performing The Show And Beyond

8.1 - The Performances

After the months and months of planning and rehearsing, it was time to open the house for Opening Night. And all that hard work paid off. The cast was wildly successful. There were very few technical issues, and the audience was treated to a beautiful show. I think our biggest issue on Opening Night was sound balance (actors' mics too low, band mix too high), which always happens in that acoustical nightmare of an auditorium.

We made some adjustments, and the next night, which was a Saturday, was even better. We even had a Sunday matinee performance as a benefit for a local high school cheerleading squad (their captain previously performed in shows at our theater and they were looking to raise funds for their trip to their national competition in Florida). What was so amazing about that Sunday performance was that after a long tech week and two prior evening performances, the kids came out and gave it their all. It was outstanding.

Finally we all could take a break for a few nights, as the next scheduled performance wasn't until the following Friday. Interestingly, after the four days of not doing the show, the Friday night performance was a little "flat" and rusty. It wasn't terrible, but it wasn't as powerful and sharply executed as the first three shows. However, Saturday night's show was spectacular. And the good news is that for the final two performances on the last weekend, the final Friday night went very well (no rust!) and Closing Night could only be described as "unbelievable".

We had quite an emotional gathering of the creative staff and the cast before the final performance. Typically we use that time to go over directorial and musical notes (praise and constructive criticism) from the previous show. But there wasn't too much of that needed. Instead, a few of us on the creative team had to let the rest of the team and the cast know how grateful we were to be a part of the show and how much we were going to miss performing it.

Everyone was so sad the show was closing, which was a true testament to the bonds of teamwork that were formed over three months (and more if you consider the preliminary work Jessica and I did). The kids deserved the thunderous applause that they got throughout the final performance, and I personally was very grateful to be able to guide the musical aspects of the show into something so fulfilling for everyone involved. We were so fortunate to have just the right director in Jessica.

Les Mis Cast

Official Cast Photo. Click on image to enlarge.