The title isn’t linkbait, I promise, just bear with me. I was driving to Palm Springs today and was rocking out (as much as one can) to my Les Miserables Pandora station when the song Empty Chairs at Empty Tables came on. See where I might be going with this? Disclosure: I’m not a conspiracy theorist: I believe we landed on the moon, that 9/11 really did happen, that Elvis is dead. Moving on.
For those of you who haven’t seen the show or need a refresher, Empty Chairs is sung by the character Marius, following a battle in which he’s lost some of his closest friends and compatriots fighting for their cause. The chairs are both a literal and symbolic representation of their losses and the song always brings audience members to tears.
Interestingly, a couple weeks before the national conventions, a fabulously talented group of Broadway stars (including LA-local David Burnham, who I was fortunate enough to meet once last year) recorded a parody piece that moved me to tears. The coincidence — or possible conspiracy theory?– that hit me like a mac truck while I was driving today was this:
The parody piece they performed was called “One Term More,” and was performed to the Les Miserables tune One Day More… 100% in support of reelecting President Obama. (Here’s the video in case you haven’t seen it.)
So let’s go over this.
Les Mis is a musical about political revolution in France, about the uprising of the Proletariat, and the struggle of the working class (from a socio-political perspective, anyways. There’s a great love story and all that goodness too.)
Broadway stars record a parody, One Term More, to the tune of Les Mis’ One Day More. It promotes reelecting President Obama (heck yes!)
Clint Eastwood blindslides the RNC with a totally off-the-wall “performance art” piece at the RNC speaking to an EMPTY CHAIR.
Les Mis has a song called Empty Chairs at Empty Tables, about the Revolution and the working class that has finally uprisen.
Smack my butt and call me Fanny, but I’m finding this whole Les Mis/Empty Chairs connection too hard to ignore- something strange is going on here. Maybe there’s a more widespread love for Les Mis than I thought, and hooray for theatre geeks. Maybe it’s because the movie is coming out this winter and it’s just really awesome subliminal marketing. And if so? You GO, marketing team. But I’d much rather think that Chuck Norris is a closet Democrat and dreams about roundhouse kicking the smugness off the Repub candidates’ faces while working Les Mis references into his RNC speeches. Ok, that was a reach. But stranger things have been happening!