musicals

Les Misérables: A Diamond of the First Water

Les Miserable movie poster featuring Anne Hathaway

Taking Victor Hugo's novel, Les Misérables, and transforming it first into a play and then into a movie is like selecting from among the finest of crown jewels and crafting them into a beautiful brooch.  Having seen the stage play many years ago and having read the book many, many years ago, I found the movie eminently satisfying, indeed beautifully done.

I had misgivings.  They had, I thought, studded it with Hollywood stars just to draw the audiences.  Nevertheless, it is very well cast.  It was some time before I recognized Hugh Jackman since his first appearance was as the imprisoned Jean Valjean with grubby face and closely-cropped hair.  It was not until he emerged as the respectable Mayor and beneficent factory owner that he was easily recognizable.  Valjean's crimes had been the stealing of a loaf of bread and the subsequent breaking of his parole for which he is relentlessly pursued by the dogged Inspector Javert, played by Russell Crowe. 

Leonard Bernstein

By Humphrey Burton

Go to catalog

Composer, pianist, author, television lecturer, Harvard lecturer, cultural icon and conductor without peer, Leonard Bernstein was one of the most flamboyant and multifaceted musical giants of the twentieth century. His versatility and boundless energy were legendary. He captivated Broadway with such hits as On the Town and West Side Story, wrested and cajoled out of the world's best orchestras the most inspired performances ever heard, and introduced several generations of Americans to classical music with his "Omnibus" and Young People's Concerts television shows. This detailed and in-depth biography brings to life this controversial and contradictory figure.

Reserve this title

Classics in the Afternoon: Singin' in the Rain

Singin' in the Rain

Come join the England Run Branch for the monthly film series Classics in the Afternoon that celebrates the great pictures from the Golden Age of Hollywood! 

On Thursday, May 12th at 2pm come see the Singin' Swingin' Glorious Feelin' Technicolor Musical about the difficulty of transitioning away from the silent screen and onto the silver screen, Singin' in the Rain (1952) starring Gene Kelly, Donald O'Conner, and Debbie Reynolds.

Sun and Sand Film Series: South Pacific

Come join the Central Rappahannock Regional Library as we present South Pacific, the final film in the Sun and Sand film Series at the Salem Church Library on Saturday, August 14th at 2:00 pm.

A young American nurse from Little Rock (Mitzi Gaynor) meets the handsome and mysterious French planter (Rossano Brazzi) on a South Pacific island during World War II. Seeking respite from the battles around them, they find refuge in each other as their romance blooms in the lush tropical paradise. (1958)