In the most exciting casting news of the week (maybe even the year), West End star Ramin Karimloo, Tony nominee Will Swenson, Caissie Levy and Tony winner Nikki M. James will star in Cameron Mackintosh’s new Broadway mounting of the Tony-winning mega-musical Les Miserables. Directed by James Powell and Laurence Connor, the newly reimagined production will begin performances on March 1, 2014, at the Imperial Theatre. Opening night is set for March 23. Additional casting will be announced shortly—although we can hardly wait “One Day More!”
Karimloo, who is currently starring in Toronto’s Les Miz, will play runaway convict Jean Valjean in the new production. He originated the role of the Phantom in the West End run of Love Never Dies. Karimloo starred in The Phantom of the Opera in the West End and in the 25th anniversary concert filmed at Royal Albert Hall, and played Jean Valjean in the West End production of Les Miserables. He will make his Broadway debut in the new revival.
Swenson, who is currently appearing in Little Miss Sunshine off-Broadway, will take on the role of merciless police inspector Javert. He garnered a Tony nomination for his performance in Hair, a production that also starred Levy as Sheila. His additional Broadway credits include Priscilla Queen of the Desert, 110 in the Shade, Lestat and Brooklyn. His film and TV appearances include The Switch, The R.M., The Singles Ward and The Good Wife.
Levy, last seen in off-Broadway’s Murder Ballad with Swenson, will play desperate mother Fantine. Her Broadway credits include Hairspray, Hair, Wicked and Ghost as Molly Jenson, a role she originated in the West End.
James, who won a Tony for her performance in The Book of Mormon, will play tough street urchin Eponine. Her additional Broadway credits include The Adventures of Tom Sawyer and All Shook Up. Her film and TV credits include Law & Order: Criminal Intent, 30 Rock, All Is Bright and The Disappearance of Eleanor Rigby.
Based on the classic novel by Victor Hugo, Les Miserables is written by Alain Boublil and Claude-Michel Schonberg, with lyrics by Herbert Kretzmer, original French text by Boublil and Jean-Marc Natel, an original adaptation by Trevor Nunn and John Caird, and additional material by James Fenton. The new production is designed by Matt Kinley, with costumes by Andreane Neofitou and Christine Rowlands, lighting by Paule Constable, sound by Mick Potter and projections by Fifty-Nine Productions.