First-class showing of 'Les Mis':

"Showbiz Queenstown's production of Les Miserables is an impressive spectacle of music, song, costumes, set and design. 

A standing ovation said it all at the end of a sellout opening night of the show at the Queenstown Memorial Hall on Wednesday. 

The show opens in 1815 with Jean Valjean being released after 19 years' hard labour with a chain gang and continues on over 20 years of his life in his search of redemption.

From the first scene, it was clear the show was going to be a hit for its costume, set, design, music and quality singing. 

Valjean is played by Simon Green with feeling and professionalism. His voice is flawless, reaching each note with ease. None of the other singers can be faulted either, but his voice is particularly powerful. 

The revolving stage is a novel approach and sets the pace and action of the show. 

With excellent set design, each scene is well thought out and obviously rehearsed to perfection. 

The singing of all the cast and company, and the 15-piece orchestra, make the night a heart-warming experience. 

Monsieur and Madame Thenardier, played by Showbiz Queenstown president Marty Newell and Arrowtowwn Primary School teacher Kathleen Brentwood, add comic relief to the show with great tunes and hilarity. 

The young stars of the show also deserve a mention for their unflappable performances. I was enthralled by the gutsy performance and singing ability of Gavroche, played by both Angus Reid (11) and Stephen Bartlett (13), of Arrowtown. 

The make-up, costumes, set design, music and singing quality add up to an extremely enjoyable night. 

Les Miserables is well worth going to see. It is a special privilege to have such a high-class show on our doorstep. 

It is clear a lot of hard work, money, time and effort has gone into the show - and it pays off. Bravo!"


- Joanne Carroll, ODT