Saturday, January 19, 2008


Gavroche on Broadway 2003 (Andrew Hoeft?).

Little Gavroche makes one pretty interesting character. I was especially impressed after seeing him in a live production (London), where Gavroche almost works at the narrator. This little boy, who seems to be living on the street all on his own, is very much at home there, keeps an eye out for everything, and seems to know everything that's going on.

It's obvious that he looks up to Enjolras, and would do anything to be part of the revolution. He seems convinced that he can be just as good as any of the other students, and that he can be of help. Of course he really is - especially when he reveals Javert's identity to the others.

His family is rather unknown to me. I've read several websites where people claim he is the little brother of Eponine (and son of the Thénardiers), but I just find that very hard to believe. I haven't read the book since I was little, so I really don't remember if that's true or not. If he really was Eponine's brother, wouldn't she be more responsible for him? Send him home, instead of letting him hang out on the barricade? If Eponine is Gavroche's sister, why doesn't he say that? (He does tell us who Eponine is ("That's Eponine, she knows her way about") so it would make sense if he pointed out that's his sister). I remember from the book that Eponine has a younger sister (Azelma), but I don't remember any mentioning of a little brother. I will have to make sure to read the book again really soon.
Also - in the original French version of the musical (1980) Gavroche clearly states that he doesn't have a mother or a father. So as far as I'm concerned that means he's not the son of the Thénardiers. (Plus if he was, Thénardier would for sure be using him as a little thief - which they don't seem to be doing).

It's really amazing how a little boy who must have had a really hard life seems to have such a strong spirit! As far as he's concerned he's the king of his world!

There have been so many talented Gavroches, but my favourite is probably Ian Tucker (Original London Cast, 1985), who's just perfect! He also gets to sing a much greater version of the song Little People. The boy I saw in London in 2006 (Jordan Grehs?) was also really great; what a talented little actor! I also really like both French Gavroches - Fabrice Benard (1980) and Alexis Tomassian (1991). Although I think pretty much all the Gavroches I've seen/heard have been great!

It's very difficult to pick a favourite Gavroche-scene. I really just like how he always is up to something! His announcement that Javert is a liar is wonderful! And of course the death scene is among the saddest theatre moments ever.