You, at the barricades listen to this: Les Misérables celebrates its 6,000th Broadway performance Oct. 3 at the Imperial Theatre.
The milestone will be recognized with a private gathering for the company. On Aug. 28, the hybrid French-and-English-written pop musical — written by Alain Boublil and Claude-Michel Schönberg and Herbert Kretzmer, directed and adapted by Trevor Nunn and John Caird and produced by Cameron Mackintosh — became the third longest-running musical in Broadway history (surpassing Oh, Calcutta! the longtime No. 3.
[Although there have been some discrepancies about how many official Broadway performances Oh, Calcutta! racked up, owing to its odd schedules and production history, the League of American Theatres and Producers, Variety and the Best Plays book series all stand by 5,959 as the figure for Les Miz to beat. It did that by Aug. 28.]
On March 12, 2001, Les Misérables started its 15th year on Broadway. The operatic, pop-style retelling of the Victor Hugo novel about injustice, love, forgiveness and redemption in Paris and provincial France in the early 19th-century is considered by many to be the best of the so-called pop operas that were created in England in the 1980s. After a London premiere by The Royal Shakespeare Company, the show opened on Broadway March 12, 1987. The score (which is three hours long) is known worldwide and is heard in many international cast recordings, including a "complete symphonic recording" which has all the material from the show sung by a hybrid cast made up of English-speaking performers from worldwide stagings.
A version for licensing to schools is being tested in a workshop on Nyack, NY, Oct. 19-21. The two-and-a-half hour school adaptation is called Les Misérables Jr..
The Imperial Theatre is at 249 W. 45th Street. For information, call (212) 239-6200.