‘Les Miserables’ roars back into the Benedum Center | Entertainment

Nick Cartell still vividly recalls the first time he saw “Les Miserables.”

It was around 1996 or 1997, when the production came to his native Arizona. He was in the balcony of the theater with his mother and father, “being blown away by what I was watching.” By the time it was over, Cartell’s mother was in tears, but not just by the power of the story of Jean Valjean, the French peasant who had been jailed for stealing a loaf of bread and the dogged pursuit of him after his release by the pitiless police inspector Javert. Cartell remembers his mother was crying also because she was “thinking about these theater actors and performers, how hard their lives are.”

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