It’s a "Miserable" life at Nepean High School

Nepean High School’s production of Les Miserables will be taking place on April 9, 10, 11 at the NHS auditorium.

Les Miserables tells the story of injustice, love, and the power of human connection.

The show is shaping up beautifully, and the production has given the whole group a chance to come together and create something spectacular. It gives everyone an opportunity to express themselves and meet new people, all while simultaneously giving us a chance to create. We’ve all become a family. A family with a deadline, a family with a goal, and a family with purpose.

“It’s hard to put yourself into the mindset of people (our age) starting a revolution knowing full well that they may die in the process, then you look around to the people on stage with you and think to yourself: sure we can do this. There is an immeasurable power in cooperation and support. This collaboration has been the best of my life,” says NHS student Emma Makin.

The show is certainly a group effort. It is a student run production, along with teacher and dramama Mrs. Coltman, the “play on words expert” Mr. Kanter, and other key figures guiding the students in the right direction. There are six departments:

  • Props: a department which makes or sources all the things used on stage by the actors
  • Sets: make the “location” for the show
  • Front of house: in charge of all things financial and marketing,
  • Stage management: the department in charge of everything behind the scenes
  • Costumes: makes everything the actors wear on stage
  • Tech: two gentlemen who make the mics, smoke, and lights all work

If you want to see behind the scenes, check out the NHS Les Miserables Instagram account.


There are about 50 people in the cast, most of whom need two, if not three or even four costumes. If you do the math that mean a lot of costumes for a high school production, and a large majority of them are created from scratch by the fabulous costumes team. The craziness and intensity of it all is summed up by Emma Davies who exclaimed – “It was fun!”- while rushing to dye some pants or pin a dress.

The students in the show have been working on this it for a gargantuan amount of time, six days a week for hours on end. Fortunately for this cast EVERYONE loves working with each other and looks forward to rehearsals everyday. Student Bronwyn Kelly said: “It’s been such a lovely experience, and even though I’m not called for every single rehearsal I wish I was because once you feel the spark and the love between a company you never want to leave.” And it’s true. This company has sparked ever since we sat down in the library and read the script. There’s been a sort of magic in the air, and as the days get closer and excitement builds, we feel like we are part of our own little revolution.

The process has been a long one, but the cast and crew are having a great time. It’s safe to say you’ll be missing out if you don’t join in.

“For a musical with a plot that is so sad, I’ve never had so much fun or laughed so hard,” says Rachel Mclaughlin. The amount of effort and time put in by every member of the company is intense but seeing it all come together is incredibly gratifying.

Lief Ramsaran put it best: “We made something. We have a final product, and it’s actually pretty amazing. You’ll be surprised.”

Tickets are on sale now. They’re $15 in advance and $20 at the door.


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