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Friday, 20 January 2012

A Kilcullen Diary: Drama group plans 'Les Mis'

Packing a major novel, spanning 18 years and many characters in early nineteenth century France onto an hour and half of stagecraft is no easy task, writes Brian Byrne.

But that's just what Kilcullen Drama Group will be doing for their next production, due for performance in April. The play is 'Les Miserables', the stage adaptation (not the musical) of Victor Hugo's novel.

Mischa Fekete is taking up the challenge of directing the play, which is a big shift instyle of production for the group, now under the leadership of John Coleman for 2012 following the recent AGM of the company.

The main thread is the story of ex-convict, Jean Valjean who becomes a force for good in the world, but cannot escape his dark past. The tale ends with the June Rebellion, or the Paris Uprising of 1832, an unsuccessful, anti-monarchist insurrection of Parisian Republicans, largely students.

The first stage version was written just one year after Hugo published the novel, in 1863. It was written by his son, Charles, and a colleague Paul Meurice. The Kilcullen version is an adaptation devised by American writer Tim Kelly (left), who died in 1998. It has a cast of 30, that itself a challenge for the Kilcullen Drama Group.

The play opens on Friday 20 April, the Gala Night, and runs to Sunday 29 April. It will include two matinee showings on Sunday 22 April and Sunday 29 April.

Above was published on the Kilcullen Diary  a blog maintained by Brian Byrne

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