This is a splendid version of the musical which employs the original cast. It should be no surprise that Les Miserables is so popular since it combines wonderful music with one of the greatest novels ever written. My only regret is that I can't see the action as well hearing the music. The pathos is so extreme that many grand opera composers would have wished to achieve such emotion in their works. Alun Armstrong's portrayal of Thenardier is masterful and benefits from being seen. There are no weak links but I would single out Colm Wilkinson, Alun Armstrong, Roger Allam, David Burt and Frances Ruffelle for special praise.
great cd cheaper than the other ones has some songs missing like castle in a cloud and gavroches song which i cant remember what thats called but still a fantastic cd and i force my kids to listen to it on the way to school!
If you were a fan of Les Mis before the 2010 25th Anniversary O2 concert you will love this, all the best songs are here and you get Colm Wilkinson, Michael Ball and Alun Armstrong singing. If like me you have come to this musical late and you love the Alfie Boe version, you will probably not enjoy it as much as the 25th anniversary DVD which must go down in history as the most fabulous show on earth, ever. But still it's an enjoyable rendition from the original cast, and Michael Ball is a far, far superior singer to the Jonas boy.
Le Miz is of course brilliant and the recording is great. It's nice that they released this 'highlights' album for a cheaper price than the whole lot, but PLEASE be aware that, as opposed to some highlight albums that skip scene changing music and background/dialogue, this misses some wonderful songs and parts that make the story cohesive (and when you listen and think "yes, this is wonderful", you'll miss the rest). Don't make the mistake I'm about to make, which is to buy a couple of extra tracks from the full album and therefore pay more than I would have done buying the whole production. You can't return an MP3! Five stars for the album and music, one star for myself thinking the highlights would be enough.
There is no doubt in my mind that Les Miserables is the best musical ever. The sets are magnificent, the story a classic and the music and lyrics absolutley magical. Every time I hear this CD it helps me remember seeing the show several years ago, I thought it would be depressing, having read the book, but it was'nt, it was a wonderful affermation of humanity and of love conquering all. We are going to see the show again in Manchester in August and we will be playing this CD on the way there and on the way home. Buy the CD, see the show and be amazed. Alan Lowe.
I purchased this recording as a result of a programme on TV over Christmas, although I had seen the actual show sometime ago. I use it on my MP3 player and it is clear and beautifully done - although it helps to know the story of the musical in order to get full enjoyment of the sequence of songs