Will Swenson steps in as Javert in Les Misérables



Tony nominee and original cast member Will Swenson returns to the role of Javert from 18 November 2015 in Cameron Mackintosh's revival of Alain Boublil & Claude-Michel Schönberg’s Tony Award-winning musical Les Misérables at the Imperial Theatre, stepping in for West End star Earl Carpenter due to a neck injury. It is still to be confirmed when Mr Carpenter will return to the production.

Mr Swenson received a Tony nomination for his performance as Berger in 'Hair' in 2009. Other Broadway credits include 'Priscilla Queen of the Desert,' '110 in the Shade,' 'Lestat,' and 'Brooklyn.'

Earl Carpenter released the following statement:

“As long as the results of the MRI aren’t too scary, I’ll be back on the barricade as soon as possible and I’m grateful to Will Swenson for filling in for me on short notice!”

Swenson added:

“Super happy to get the chance to come back to Les Miz for a couple of weeks and fill in for Earl while his injury heals up. We've all been there before. And for all the times I've been hurt, I'm glad to repay the karma cycle of filling-in. Wishing the amazing Earl Carpenter a speedy and healthy recovery!”

The current principal cast also includes Alfie Boe (Jean Valjean), Montego Glover (Fantine), Brennyn Lark (Eponine), Chris McCarrell (Marius), Alex Finke (Cosette), Gavin Lee (Thenardier), Rachel Izen (Mme Thenardier), and Wallace Smith (Enjolras).

Les Misérables opened at the Imperial Theatre on 23 March 2014, following previews from 1 March 2014, and is currently taking bookings to 27 March 2016.

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

Will Swenson
(Photo by Matthew Murphy)