Matt Lucas will step into the role of Thénardier in the new production of Les Misérables at the newly refurbished Sondheim Theatre beginning December 23.
Lucas, who played the role in the recent concert engagement of the international hit musical at the Gielgud Theatre, will play a six-week run, temporarily replacing Gerard Carey, who is taking a leave of absence to rest his vocal chords and avoid long-term damage to his voice. Carey is expected to return to the production February 3, 2020.
In a statement producer Cameron Mackintosh said, “Just as I was thanking the gods of the theatre for getting the spectacularly rebuilt Sondheim Theatre open on schedule with our brilliant new cast and production, we heard that our irrepressible Thénardier, Gerard Carey, would not be allowed to perform for several weeks due to a serious problem with his vocal chords. Though obviously a disappointment for him and all of us, I’m thrilled to announce that Matt Lucas has volunteered to abandon his Christmas plans and rejoin Les Miz as Master of the House after his recent triumph in the staged concert at the Gielgud Theatre.”
Lucas’ other theatre credits include Taboo at the Leicester Square Theatre and the touring production of Little Britain Live.
The cast is led by Jon Robyns (Hamilton) as Jean Valjean, Bradley Jaden as Javert, Carrie Hope Fletcher as Fantine, Shan Ako as Eponine, Josefina Gabrielle as Madame Thénardier, Ashley Gilmour as Enjolras, and Lily Kerhoas as Cosette. (Fletcher will play Fantine through February 29, 2020, and April 20–July 25. Rachelle Ann Go will play the role March 2–April 18 and then again beginning July 27.)
Fletcher, Jaden, Ako, and Kerhoas were recently seen in these same roles in Les Misérables—The Staged Concert at London’s Gielgud through November 30.
The ensemble includes Kelly Agbowu, Ciarán Bowling, Richard Carson, Rodney Earl Clarke, Matthew Dale, Matt Dempsey, Harry Dunnett, Jessie Hart, Jessica Joslin, Sarah Lark, Georgie Lovatt, Ellie Ann Lowe, Luke McCall, Leo Miles, Claire O’Leary, Shane O’Riordan, Kathy Peacock, Sam Peggs, Mark Pearce, Emma Warren, Sake Wijers, Mared Williams, and Samuel Wyn-Morris.
Les Misérables is written by Alain Boublil and Claude-Michel Schönberg and is based on the novel by Victor Hugo. It has music by Schönberg, lyrics by Herbert Kretzmer, original French text by Boublil and Jean-Marc Natel, additional material by James Fenton, and adaptation by Trevor Nunn and John Caird. Orchestrations are by Stephen Metcalfe, Christopher Jahnke, and Stephen Brooker with original orchestrations by John Cameron.
The production is directed by Laurence Connor and James Powell and designed by Matt Kinley (inspired by the paintings of Victor Hugo with costumes by Andreane Neofitou and Christine Rowland) with lighting by Paule Constable, sound by Mick Potter, musical staging by Michael Ashcroft and Geoffrey Garratt, and music supervision by Stephen Brooker and Alfonso Casado Trigo.