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Bringing Les Misérables to life - WCAX.COM Local Vermont News, Weather and Sports-

Bringing Les Misérables to life

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BURLINGTON, Vt. -

Lyric Theatre brings a new play to Burlington's Flynn Center for the Performing Arts.

It's a production run mainly by community volunteers dedicated to the arts.

Stephen Kendall is the Production Supervisor, "We are a little less than 3 weeks from opening night for Les Miserables so we are rehearsing."

With a 53 member cast, a 20 piece orchestra and a team of 15 makeup artists, it will take all hands on deck to bring Les Miserables to life.

"It takes place in a not very pretty time in France, in the early to mid 1800s to the early 1800s. So there are a lot of make up special effects, they're working on that today," said Kendall.

The cast rehearses for 15 weeks but make up only gets 10 days to get it right.

Make up designer Kelley Lane said, "I usually hold a workshop or two so people can get comfortable with what they're going to be doing the week of the run."

Lyric Theatre has been bringing 2 plays a year to the Flynn since 1974. It New England's largest volunteer theatre group. This year, the play based on a classic novel requires detailed makeup that will captivate the audience.

Actress Helen Weston comments, "It is fun, I thought when I looked it the mirror, oh that's a very nice job and I have no doubt that we have highly skilled makeup artists here."

Actor Eric Rainville said, "The make up, I'm sure, is very difficult to balance all these different parts but they did a fantastic job I really like it."

Some of the makeup artist for Les Miserables have little experience, but are in good hands if they are ready to learn.

"Have fun, that's the first thing I say, have fun. This is a really fun way to be a part of your community and to be part of the Lyric production," said Lane.

"Lots of times people will just come in with no skill and we'll train them, we will give them the basics," said Kendall.

Many of the actors change characters throughout the play requiring a whole new look, which could take up to 20 minutes.

Lane explains, "Maybe taking it down to look like a farm hand, then later to a lovely lady. The lovely lady then turns into a beggar woman."

Much of the makeup is donated and some is from previous shows. But Sunday, it's all going to good use to get every look down before opening day on April 4th.

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