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The Corinthe
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Date:2015-08-03 21:20
Subject:The release of our Les Miserables 20 hour series trailer, and video of our film & TV convention pan

The release of our Les Miserables 20 hour series trailer, and video of  our film & TV convention panel discussion

Over the past weekend we have been representing the series at the Optimus film and TV convention in Torquay, where we were honored to be given a half hour slot in between Game of Thrones, and Ghostbusters, which also marked the release of our promo test-footage trailer for the series!


Panel discussion

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Date:2015-05-13 11:47

Behind the scenes filming promos and trailer for the 20-hour Les Miserables film series that I am producing with my period-drama secialist theatre and film company

We had a fantastic weekend filming for the trailer in Dartmouth and Plymouth for scenes with Valjean, Javert, Fantine, Marius and Cosette. Despite the very early morning starts that come with filming, and the fact we were filming in two towns, we had a fantastic time, supported by amazing local actors, and crew members. It is so exciting to see the series trailer coming together bit by bit, supported by an amazing cast. :) The next shoot is next Saturday, in Brixham Museum, and in Stoke Fleming.

Meantime, our producer grabbed some photos behind the scenes!

EDIT - And we have started a behind-the-scenes youtube channel at https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLjNo_NJXQ6Nmj4Xq1ZjPl6y1TTy2eI7xF

(dont forget we are looking for supporting cast for the full series which commences filming around Devon and Cornwall at the end of the summer, see our site at www.southdevonplayers.com and hit the Les Mis tab) )

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Date:2014-06-29 13:03
Subject:Some Lesgle Meta: On the French Postal Service

Unlike the rest of the boys, we have concrete information on Lesgle's background, yet for some reason, it appears this has not been fully explored. As I go on, in order to distinguish between father and son, the father will be referred to as M. Lesgle, and the son will referred to by his nickname, Bossuet.

The facts Hugo has set out for us:

1)M. Lesgle was in Calais in 1814 to greet Louis XVIII's return from exile.
2)M. Lesgle delivered a petition to the king asking for the directorship of a post office.
3)M. Lesgle received his post office, in Meaux.
4)Bossuet is said to be from Meaux.
5)M. Lesgle accumulated enough wealth to have owned outright one house and one field.
6)Bossuet entered into a false speculation after his father's death and lost both house and field.
7)All points above happened prior to 1828.
8)Bossuet was most likely born in 1803.
9)Bossuet is enrolled at the law school in 1828.

Read more...Collapse )

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Date:2013-08-19 21:19

The theatre production of Les Miserables that I am directing (a new non-musical one based as tightly as feasible on the unabridged book) is coming on really well - we have won a load of awards for the costuming even though it is all made from recycled things got via charity shops and Freecycle.

Shows only a month away! eeep!
And in the interim it looks as if we may have a national TV channel crew coming to film one of our rehearsals.

nailbite nailbite nailbite...

If you want any info our main site is http://southdevonplayers.weebly.com - or our facebook is https://www.facebook.com/sdevonplayers
Performances in Paignton and Brixham, in South Devon, UK.

For those who can't come in person,  the show is being filmed on the Sept 20th performance.

Photo this time - Ed Stewart as Enjolras
We were at one of the local carnivals and some phtographer friends of mine passed by and snapped this picture of Ed - now one of the main promo photos of the show.

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Date:2013-07-16 13:01

New  Les Miserables theatre production around Torbay (Devon UK) this September...
Directed by me.

Press release waffleCollapse )
We got a lot (not all, sadly! rounding up all of the 30-strong cast other than for shows and rehearsals is very hard!) of the cast out on a days character photoshoot a couple of weeks ago.. The photos are by me and a couple of friends.
In no particular order:Meet some of the cast... Collapse )

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Date:2013-03-14 16:59

Open theatre auditions - Brixham, Devon
Wednesday May 15th, 2013

Les Miserables; The Memoirs of Jean Valjean

with the South Devon Players theatre company from Brixham.

Full cast required for this full-length show, this is one of the straight-play adaptations rather than the musical. This is a non-musical adaptation based on the book by Victor Hugo.

Auditionees for Little Cosette, Petit Gervais, and Gavroche the urchin, must be accompanied by parents/ legal guardians at auditions and at all rehearsals and shows.

The performances will take place in the first weekend of September 2013. Auditions at 7 for 7.30pm, at Chestnut Heights Community Centre, Brixham, rehearsals taking place from the following Wednesday at the same time (until around 9/ 9.30pm).

Auditions consist of a script reading for roles that you are interested in, and if you are not familiar with the story or background history, we are putting together a reference page you can look at - http://southdevonplayers.weebly.com/les-miserables.html on our main website.

As well as performers, we are also looking for front of house helpers, and set/ stage hands too, so if you do not feel like performing, there are plenty of other ways to get involved in the show.
Please note that Act 2 of the show is likely to contain strobe or light flashes.

The South Devon Players theatre company are an award-winning, completely non-profit community/ amateur theatre company founded in 2005, based in Brixham and featured on BBC 1 national television in January 2013. We mainly specialise in shows about local history, but sometimes expand to wider historical events (as in the case of this production) as well. We are family friendly, lively and welcoming to all who wish to be involved in theatre at any level. In the past, members have gone on to perform in major feature films, and train at RADA. Our membership ranges from age 10 to 65, and from professional performers to complete beginners, all of whom work as part of a team to create new exciting shows which are then brought to our local community.

Les Miserables: The Memoirs of Jean Valjean will be directed by one of the theatre company’s founders; Miss Laura J (
elven_ranger), who as well as being a professional performer and model in her own right, also holds a Masters degree in teaching performing arts, as well as degrees in film production, and photography – and has performed in another production of Les Miserables in the past, elsewhere. She is accompanied by Mrs Louise German, as assistant director. Louise is the other co-founder of the South Devon Players, who has decades of community and amateur theatre experience in her own right. Both are experienced directors, and looking forward to joining you to create the biggest show the South Devon Players have yet produced.

All our general audition information is on our main website here

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Date:2013-02-24 14:19
Subject:Faculty of Law basics during the July Monarchy

Hello, nerd fandom! I've needed to do this for ages, and I've finally got it typed up in translation for those who haven't been able to utilise the resources in French.

Since fic writing requires more detail than Hugo gave, and he likely did not feel that his countrymen required more details about student life and finances (though his foreign readers might have found it useful), it's been necessary to a) dig into Balzac, who loved detail and b) do some serious digging in extant documents of the period.

I'll go into the medical school another time, since there's already good info out there in English. The current focus is on the law school and the financial burdens on students without obvious family support: in Les Mis, that's Marius and Lesgle. I'll start by explaining the law school degree structure, then go into the costs, then I'll have a bit attempting to draw conclusions for Lesgle based on the details Hugo gives. My sources are unfortunately July Monarchy rather than Restoration: some changes undoubted happened over the years. However, these sources should enable some conclusions to be drawn.

Rendu, Ambroise, ed. “Code universitaire, ou lois, statuts, règlemens de l'université royale de France”. Paris: Hachette, 1835. This covers just what it says – the laws and regulations governing the university system.

De Girardin, Emile. “De l'instruction publique en France: ouvrage utile à familles”. Third Edition. Paris: Mairet et Fournier, 1842.

Cut for 6 pages of pure informationCollapse )

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Date:2013-01-03 20:31
Subject:lesmisquote (Zazzle)

Hi guys,

I just wanted to let you know about a Zazzle store I set up a while ago selling clothing, accessories and other stuff featuring quotations from Les Mis (the book). Most of the products are available in both the original French and an English translation (usually McAfee/Fahnestock), and the mugs I have designed include both languages.

The designs are entirely a result of my messing around when I had some spare time and I'm certainly no design expert, but hopefully you might enjoy some of what I've put up there. I tried to keep them light on images (with a couple of exceptions) and focus the designs instead on the words. I've used a slightly random selection of quotations - it would take a long time to go through the Brick systematically, after all. Some were ones that have stood out to me at some point in the past and others that I have found through searching particular chapters as well as simply opening the book at random. At the moment there's a relatively high concentration of barricade-related passages. What can I say? There's some good stuff there.

I created this store during a period when I had lots of spare time, and I had intended to create a full set of products for each design. However, unfortunately, real life caught up with me and so many sections are incomplete. I hope to finish this at some point, and perhaps to start on some new designs, but this can't be in the near future due to my time commitments. However, if there is a design you like and you would like to see it on a particular product, do let me know and I will be happy to create it for you.

The store can be found at www.zazzle.com/lesmisquote*, and there are also country-specific sites including:
UK, Australia, Canada, France, Germany, etc

The texts I've used so far are:

"Man has one tyrant, Ignorance."

"Hope: The word that the finger of God has written on the brow of everyone."
(Adapted from 1.II.vii)

"There is one spectacle greater than the sea: that is the sky.
There is one spectacle greater than the sky: that is the interior of the soul."

"To write the poem of the human conscience, if only of one man, even the most insignificant man, would be to swallow up all epics in a superior and definitive epic."

"Nothing is more dangerous than discontinued labour; it is habit lost."

"God, having made the mouse, said, "I've made a blunder.""

"To subdue matter is the first step; to realize the ideal is the second."

"Liberty: the sovereignty of myself over myself;
Equality: the concession that each makes to all;
Fraternity: the protection of all over each."
(Adapted from 5.I.v)

"Light! Light! Everything comes from it, and everything returns to it."

"Equality is not a society of big blades of grass and little oaks."
(Slightly adapted from 5.I.v)

"Brothers, whoever dies here dies in the radiance of the future and we are entering a grave illuminated by the dawn."

"Glory to the mattress that nullifies a cannon."

"There are people who observe the rules of honour as we observe the stars, from far off."

"Infallibility is not infallible."

"There is scarcely anything else in the world but to love one another."

And these are a sample of the designs (the design for each quote varies from product to product but remains based on the themes shown here):

I'd love it if you'd check it out. :)

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Date:2010-08-26 15:22
Subject:Marville-ous photos of pre-Haussmann Paris
Mood: geeky

I can recommend the work of Charles Marville.
There's some excellent examples online on this Paris site and in the Getty.
I was pleased to find a couple of images of the Rue Tirechappe, now vanished under (I think) the Rue de Pont-Neuf (meeting the Rue Saint-Honoré): in the Hugoverse, in the 15C this was the Frollo family home, to which 19-year-old Claude ran from the university, to find his parents dead from plague and baby Jehan crying in his cradle.
(x-post to prouvaire)

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Date:2010-08-20 13:58
Subject:Why Disney should have left Victor Hugo alone…
Mood: WTF?!

Read this and laugh (or weep).

(x-post to silverwhistle, prouvaire)

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Date:2010-08-16 21:00
Subject:Strange opera production: Schmidt's 'Notre Dame'
Mood: amused

Earlier this year, there was a very odd production in Dresden of Schmidt's Notre Dame, updated to 1930s US, with a Jean Harlow/Roxie Hart-esque Esméralda…
Here's an English-language review and the opera house's own page on it.
There's a trailer for it here.
On the plus side, Claude is (correctly) in his 30s and (as the book demands!) gets his kit off for some self-mortification. ;-D

(x-post to silverwhistle, prouvaire)

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Date:2010-08-08 19:19
Subject:Starting to develop weird cross-over fic notions…
Mood: cheerful

I've started to get into Ninety-Three, and in parts it makes me scream.
Boys, boys… You spend all night in prison debating the philosophy and ethics of revolution, instead of doing something useful like planning an escape?!!!
And Victor, did it never cross your mind that there's a serious "squick" factor in having a girl with a chest/shoulder wound, who happens to be a nursing mother, tended by an old man…? (Clue: it's not just cows that have to be milked…)
Not to mention the usual "the higher the body count, the better" Victor attitude: no, you can't let one of your heroes live on, a sadder and wiser man, can you?

Anyway, I was talking about it in a café today with a friend, who's a Scarlet Pimpernel fan, and we started to develop a slightly mad notion of a crossover fic, using an episode of the BBC SP series (with Richard E Grant) as a jumping-off point… Things may get silly…

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Date:2010-08-07 19:50
Subject:Some interesting NDdP ballets
Mood: artistic

In the 1950s, the 19C ballet La Esméralda was given a makeover, with additional music and more book-plot. This variant (which is sometimes called Gudule's Daughter, as it reinstates the Pâquette subplot) has been revived in Moscow at the Stanislavskii Music Theatre.
There's also a Royal Swedish Opera Ballet, Ringaren i Notre-Dame, from which pictures may be seen here.

(x-post to prouvaire)

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Date:2010-08-05 21:05
Subject:Centre for 19C French Studies online
Mood: excited

Centre d'études du 19e siècle français - Joseph Sablé - Centre for 19th Century French Studies, University of Toronto, has lots of stuff on archive.org! Free!

(x-post to old_french_lit

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Date:2010-08-03 12:28
Subject:Brion-illustrated NDdP
Mood: cheerful

I was lucky enough to pick up a secondhand copy of this fairly cheap (because it was in French, so hard to sell in the UK!), but here it is on line. Enjoy.

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Date:2010-08-02 18:39
Subject:Re-plug of my Les Mis website

Since the last time I plugged it here, there wasn't nearly as much on it. :) Carpe Horas - a site of many things, most of them at least tangentially related to Les Misérables.

Outtakes - scraps of material collected from Hugo's notes and rough drafts, deleted scenes if you will. All the best bits (including an unexpected meeting between Patron-Minette and the Friends of the ABC, and a fanfiction-esque interlude about what happened to Tholomyès) have been translated into English, and the rest (including a strange digression on prostitution) is slowly in the course of being translated.

History - Bits and pieces about 1820s and 30s France. A timeline, modern equivalents of currency and units of measure, excerpts of letters related to the events in the book, a lot on 1830s republicanism (inluding some publications of the Society of the Friends of the People, loosely the model for the Friends of the ABC). Mostly translated into English, except the longer Friends of the People material.

Paris - Digitized maps of pre-Haussmann Paris, some links to websites on Parisian cartography, a few early 20th century photographs of the Rue Mondétour.

The Mizzie Tour Guide - Finding the places in modern-day France (particularly Paris) where the action of the novel took place. Photos of Montreuil-sur-Mer, the site of the barricade, the part of the Seine where Javert drowned himself, etc.

Cast recordings - Cast lists and distribution info for all the major cast recordings of the musical. (Yes, I know it's three years out of date.)

Translations of the French lyrics - An attempt at a literal translation of the lyrics to the 1991 Paris revival version of the musical.

And on the less serious side... fanwork (fanfiction and avatars, might soon contain essays and rants again) and silly games and Javascript doohickies.

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Date:2010-08-02 23:11
Subject:Illustrated Hugo on line
Mood: calm

Les Misérables, with Brion illustrations. (800 pages, free PDF)
Notre Dame de Paris, with gorgeous frontispiece.

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Date:2010-08-02 11:43
Subject:Couple of questions...
Mood: cheerful

a) Is this group still breathing?
b) Is it the best place for book-based Victor Hugo fandom?

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Date:2010-07-01 23:44
Subject:New fan fiction community


I've just made a new community, for those of us who like to write and read stories based on Victor Hugo's works, as well as other classic novels.  I'm hoping that eventually it can be an active community, with prompts, writing contests, and other fun stuff.  Click and join!  :P


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Date:2010-01-12 20:00
Subject:Editions of NDdP that claim to be 'Complete & Unabridged' but aren't
Mood: amused

jackks has drawn attention to this over at les_sanspapiers. She has the Wordsworth paperback, which uses the HoND title, claims to be "Complete & Unabridged", but completely omits Hugo's preface about the word 'Ananké'.

I've found the same is true of the Penguin Popular Classics and the Airmont editions (both of which use the HoND title) and the 1950s Dent Everyman edition (which uses the real NDdP title). The Airmont edition is also censored, despite claiming to be "complete and unabridged": for example, it reduces the list of Pâquette's named lovers, omits Phœbus urinating on the inscription on the Cardinal's statue, Jehan's remarks about Isabeau's breasts , and La Falourdel's song. One might expect this in 19C editions, but the Airmont translation first appeared in 1968!

However, the Penguin Classics and the Oxford Classics editions (both under the NDdP title) are genuinely uncut. Apart from the Everyman edition, then, I think this is chiefly a problem with editions that use HoND as the title.

(x-post to frollophiles and hond)

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