Today I feel rather sad and rather excited at the same time. I’m not really sure why I feel sad, though I was going to be heading to London today to watch the fabulous Les Miserables. This has turned out not to be the case but friends of mine have gone, so I am equally sad not to have a catch up with them all. I do hope I get to go again soon, I wouldn’t mind seeing Sierra Boggess as Fantine, but I especially want to see Tam Mutu’s interpretation of Inspector Javert. I’ve heard nothing but good. I have seen it three times before, the last cast I saw had Ramin Karimloo playing the lead against Hadley Fraser’s equally (if, in my opininon, not stronger) brilliant Javert.
I am, however, VERY excited about the release of the Les Miserables movie, and I have been keeping myself occupied by watching (repeatedly) the newly released, longer trailer. For those of you who know nothing about this show, the movie has some big names in it such as Hugh Jackman (Jean Valjean) and Russell Crowe (Javert). I have to assume these have been cast in order to widen the appeal of the film to the more general viewing public, and as it stands I shall reserve judgement on the singing abilities until I have seen the whole thing. I know Hugh Jackman is a talented performer (and easy on the eye with it) and I believe that all the singing was done ‘live’ so kudos to them all. As a musical theatre fan I know they have cast many past and present cast members to be in the smaller roles too and I’m pleased about this as they are every bit as (if in some cases not more) talented as the ‘stars’. Samantha Barks should undoubtedly get a mention as for sure she will steal the show as Eponine. I am also looking forward to the cameo role of Hadley Fraser.
In case you have not managed to see the trailer, you need to have your appetite whetted, so please take a look at this link. I almost want to cry watching it and I have to say I feel sorry for whoever comes with me to see it as there will be tears. A LOT of tears! My big disappointment at this present time is that we have to wait until 11 January 2013 to see it. It really can’t come quickly enough! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EkHHHUk8RCw Eeeeeeeeeeepppppppp!
You all by now probably know how much I love the Phantom Of The Opera and Les Mis is in the same league. Epic and incredible. But one reason I am currently enjoying the Phantom tour so much is because my all time favourite performer (and, in all honesty, favourite person) is in it. He has been in both Les Mis and Phantom previously and is one of the nicest people you’ll meet, not to mention a brilliant performer with a wonderful voice. Simon Bailey has been in the theatre business for around 10 years and has been in all sorts of roles, but the reason I am talking about him today is because in the VERY near future he has an album coming out. For me this is the most exciting release in a long time – better than any other album or cinema release! He has been in the studio all week recording and I believe it is all down to the finishing touches now.
I am ridiculously excited and I really, genuinely hope that ‘Looking Up’ (as it is titled) is a massive success for Simon. He works so hard and has contributed four of his own compositions to this album. Two can be previewed on YouTube (in their original form and they are both beautiful) but I simply cannot wait to hear what the amazing Tom Deering has added to them. Combine these with the talents of Sabrina Aloueche, Ramin Karimloo, Katie Hall and even some jammin’ bass by Hadley it is an absolute MUST HAVE! It can be pre-ordered now (needless to say, I ordered the minute it was possible to do so) and Simon is going to sign all the pre ordered copies. Thats’s GOT to be worth having. Pre-order here: http://www.simonbaileyonline.com/ As an absolute die hard supporter of this guy I am doing everything in my power to ensure this is a success, though in truth, just the fact that it is by Simon should be enough. I often think I annoy him as I go to see him a lot (though he is always gracious and totally lovely) but I really do hope that my support is appreciated and I hope he knows if he ever needs anything or wants me to do something for him then I would bend over backwards to help. I miss him! And in case you wanted to witness him ‘doing his thing’ you can catch him as Raoul in the POTO tour (currently in Milton Keynes). You know, just in case you need proof of his quality!
So there is much excitement at the moment and in the build up to Christmas I have a lot going on which I hope to write about, such as a visit to West End Fests next weekend. This is a charity event but with the line up of talent involved it is more like a gala! Held in Covent Garden, there will be a whole host of musical theatre performers appearing and it looks set to be a really brilliant evening. Not to mention the after party! If you are interested, here is the link: http://www.seetickets.com/Event/WESTENDFEST/St-Paul-s-Church-Covent-Garden/675139 I believe there are even a few half price tickets available…so go get ’em!
I also have a couple of singing lessons (I will say more about these when I know they are not a total disaster) arranged, a Ramin Karimloo gig (or two) to attend, and it goes without saying that before the year is out I will have returned a few times to see the Phantom tour. I’m just trying to be patient while I wait for it to come to Cardiff. I really don’t like all this waiting, especially hearing others that are going! I just want to be there too! I have just realised that my blog today sounds like an advertisement. It’s not meant to be, I was hoping just to share some of my passions with you and give you a chance to see what I’m banging on about. Who knows, you may feel inspired or excited too!
For now, I will put on a soundtrack to listen to while I clean my house and I shall sing at the top of my lungs while doing so. I hope the neighbours will appreciate their education into decent music haha! This week at work has been a tough one and it is the thought of the weekends and the events that I am heading to soon which are keeping me going. So off I go, to get up to my elbows cleaning the toilet, and using the bathroom acoustics as my theatre I shall bid you farewell for now and I cannot wait to report on all the forthcoming excitement.