Ramin Karimloo to depart Les Mis on 30 August 2015

Tony Award nominee Ramin Karimloo, who can currently be seen as Jean Valjean in Cameron Mackintosh's revival of Alain Boublil & Claude-Michel Schönberg’s Tony Award-winning musical Les Misérables has now confirmed his final performance. He will appear at the Imperial Theatre for the last time on 30 August 2015. There is no word yet on Mr. Karimloo's replacement.

Ramin Karimloo earned a Tony nomination for Best Actor in a Musical for his current role of Jean Valjean. He is also well known for originating the role of The Phantom in Andrew Lloyd Webber's sequel 'Love Never Dies,' as well as playing the same role in the original 'The Phantom of the Opera,' both in the West End and at the 25th Anniversary concert at the Royal Albert Hall. Prior to Broadway, he played Valjean in the West End production of 'Les Mis' and in Toronto.

Les Misérables opened at the Imperial Theatre on 23 March 2014, following previews from 1 March 2014, and is currently taking bookings to 27 September 2015.

The principal cast currently includes Ramin Karimloo (Jean Valjean), Will Swenson (Javert), Erika Henningsen (Fantine), Brennyn Lark (Eponine), Chris McCarrell (Marius), Samantha Hill (Cosette), Gavin Lee (Thenardier), Rachel Izen (Madame Thenardier), and Wallace Smith (Enjolras).

Based on Victor Hugo’s classic novel, Les Misérables is an epic and uplifting story about the survival of the human spirit. The score includes the classic songs “I Dreamed a Dream,” “On My Own,” “Stars,” “Bring Him Home,” “Do You Hear the People Sing?,” “One Day More,” “Empty Chairs at Empty Tables,” “Master Of The House” and many more.

Les Misérables is written by Alain Boublil and Claude-Michel Schönberg and has music by Claude-Michel Schönberg, lyrics by Herbert Kretzmer and original French text by Alain Boublil and Jean-Marc Natel, original adaption by Trevor Nunn and John Caird and additional material by James Fenton.

This newly re-imagined production is directed by Laurence Connor and James Powell, designed by Matt Kinley inspired by the paintings of Victor Hugo with costumes by Andreane Neofitou and additional costumes by Christine Rowlands, lighting by Paule Constable, sound by Mick Potter and projections by Fifty-Nine Productions. The original Les Misérables orchestrations are by John Cameron with new orchestrations by Christopher Jahnke and additional orchestrations by Stephen Metcalfe and Stephen Brooker.

Les Misérables originally premiered at the Barbican Theatre in a co-production with the Royal Shakespeare Company in 1985. It transferred to the Palace Theatre in December of that year and then moved to its current home at the Queen’s Theatre in April 2004 where it is still playing to standing room only. In October 2006 Les Misérables took over the title of World’s Longest Running Musical followed by two other Cameron Mackintosh productions, Andrew Lloyd Webber’s 'The Phantom of the Opera' and 'Cats.'

The Broadway production of Les Misérables originally opened at the Broadway Theatre on 12 March 1987 and transferred to the Imperial Theatre on 17 October 1990 running for 6,680 performances. The musical returned to Broadway on 9 November 2006 where the show played the Broadhurst Theatre until its final performance on 6 January 2008.

The Universal film version of Les Misérables co-produced by Cameron Mackintosh and Working Title Films, and directed by Tom Hooper, has grossed $150 million domestically and nearly $400 million worldwide since its 2012 Christmas Day release. The film received the Golden Globe Award as Best Picture (Musical/Comedy) and received eight Academy Award nominations, including Best Picture.

- by Tom Millward

Photo by Matthew Murphy
Ramin Karimloo