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Les Miserables: We Compare The Stars' Vocal Chords
How will the cast fare in Tom Hooper's live-sung musical? Listen to their past performances and find out


This month's Empire includes our report from the set of Tom Hooper's big-budget take on Les Miserables, the record-breaking musical based on Victor Hugo's novel about the student uprising in 1830s Paris. Where most musicals see the cast record the songs months before filming and mime to playback during the shoot, Hooper is taking the bold step of recording the singing live on set with the songs fed to the actors via earpiece. So how does the crack team of established megastars, character thesps and up-and-comers stack up in the singing experience / ability stakes? Ian 'Falsetto' Freer investigates...
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Hugh Jackman

Hugh Jackman

ROLE
Jean Valjean, a prisoner who breaks parole, changes identity, becomes a small-town mayor and adopts Cosette, the daughter of struggling mother Fantine.

SIGNATURE SONG
'Who Am I?'

VOCAL STATISTICS
Played Gaston in a local production of Disney's Beauty And The Beast; starred as Curly in the National Theatre's production of Oklahoma!, snagging an Olivier award nomination; sang the lead in Carousel at Carnegie Hall; won a Tony for his portrayal of Peter Allen in the hit musical The Boy From Oz; performed two one-man shows — Hugh Jackman: Back On Broadway and a more autobiographical revue — to huge acclaim. He has also hosted the Tonys three times and the Oscars once, singing with Les Mis co-star Anne Hathaway.
Listen to Hugh singing

Russell Crowe

Russell Crowe

ROLE
Inspector Javert, the cop who relentlessly pursues Valjean — 'Prisoner 24601' — over the decades.

SIGNATURE SONG
'Soliloquy'

VOCAL STATISTICS
In the '80s recorded under the name Russ Le Roq releasing the synth pop single 'I Want To Be Like James Dean'; formed band Roman Antix which transformed in 1992 into rockers 30 Odd Foot Of Grunts; in 2005, the band split and he formed new combo The Ordinary Fear Of God — their album My Hand, My Heart features a tribute to Crowe's Gladiator co-star Richard Harris; joined Keith Urban's band on stage in Vancouver to cover Johnny Cash's Folsom Prison Blues, then joined the rest of the band in a version of the Steve Miller Band anthem, The Joker.
Listen to Russell singing

Anne Hathaway

Anne Hathaway

ROLE
Fantine, a factory worker who is forced to sell her hair and body in an attempt to provide for her illegitimate daughter, Cosette.

SIGNATURE SONG
'I Dreamed A Dream'

VOCAL STATISTICS
Grew up backstage at Les Mis — her mother played Fantine in the US national company; sang with the All-Eastern U.S. High School Honors Chorus at Carnegie Hall aged 18; received strong reviews for her performances in musical Carnival!; sang two songs on the soundtrack for Ella Enchanted; a constant singing fixture at Hollywood galas — YouTube her singing in honour of Meryl Streep — or at Awards ceremonies, chiefly as co-host of the Oscars in 2011. She is a soprano by nature.
Listen to Anne singing

Amanda Seyfried

Amanda Seyfried

ROLE
A grown up Cosette, the daughter of Fantine, who falls for student Marius.

SIGNATURE SONG
'A Heart Full Of Love'

VOCAL STATISTICS
Took singing lessons, studied Opera and trained with a Broadway coach in her teens; played Sophie in Mamma Mia! recording five songs for the soundtrack album; wrote and recorded Little House for the Dear John soundtrack and covered Sam The Sham And The Pharaohs' L'il Red Riding Hood following the release of Red Riding Hood.
Listen to Amanda singing


Eddie Redmayne

Eddie Redmayne

ROLE
Marius, student rebel who falls for Cosette just before the battle kicks off.

SIGNATURE SONG
'Empty Chairs And Empty Tables'

VOCAL STATISTICS
Only singing previous seems to be with choir at Eton College; saw the musical in London aged nine; would sing along to a cassette tape with his brother on long car journeys — he would sing Javert, his brother would take on Valjean. Listen to Eddie singing (from 1:05)

Samantha Barks

Samantha Barks

ROLE
Eponine, daughter of the Thenardiers who is secretly infatuated with Marius.

SIGNATURE SONG
'On My Own'

VOCAL STATISTICS
Brought up on the Isle of Man, started dancing aged 3; released debut album aged 17; won best foreign singer representing the Isle of Man at the Maltese International Song Competition (who knew?); came third in the BBC's find-a-Nancy-in-Oliver! Competition I'll Do Anything — the Isle of Man tourist board changed the name of the island to the Isle of Sam in support; subsequently played Sally Bowles in Cabaret, Nancy in Oliver! and Eponine in the West End, for the 25th anniversary concert and for the Royal Variety Performance; Empire has heard her sing live on set and frankly it is stunning.
Listen to Samantha singing

Aaron Tveit

Aaron Tveit

ROLE
Enjolras, a prime mover in the student uprising and Marius' homeboy.

SIGNATURE SONG
'ABC Café / Red And Black'

VOCAL STATISTICS
Left theatre school early to join the cast of Rent (he later starred in a production directed by How I Met Your Mother's Neil Patrick Harris); made Broadway debut in Hairspray; acclaimed for off Broadway production Next To Normal; landed the role of Fyero in Wicked; big break came playing Frank Abagnale Jr. in the musical version of Spielberg's Catch Me If You Can; you pronounce the surname Ta-Vey; and, yes, that is him from Gossip Girl.
Listen to Aaron singing (from 1:45)

Sacha Baron Cohen and Helena Bonham Carter

Sacha Baron Cohen and Helena Bonham Carter

ROLES
The Thenardiers - conniving, social climbing innkeepers. They pamper their daughter Eponine and mistreat their ward, Cosette.

SIGNATURE SONG
'Master Of The House'

VOCAL STATISTICS
Both showed their singing chops in Tim Burton's Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber Of Fleet Street — Baron Cohen was the only cast member to sing live; she sang 'Someday I'll Find You' for Radio 4's Noel Coward adaptation Private Lives and 'Heart & Soul' for the soundtrack of period drama Heart Of Me; he has sung in the guise of his characters and is in the frame to play Freddie Mercury in a Queen biopic.
Listen to Sacha singing
Listen to Helan singing

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1 Sacha Baron Cohen
His link is not working! Fix please! Read More

Posted on Monday September 24, 2012, 18:23 by Mr. Fincher


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