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I'm Jane McIntyre, a voiceover and writer, formerly an award-winning BBC radio newsreader and producer. My blog covers life, love and loss; travel, coffee and chocolate; with some heartfelt pieces in the mix about my late dad, who had dementia. Just a click away, I'm half of the team behind - two empty nesters who whizzed round the world in 57 days.

Monday, 14 January 2013

Les Mis, mascara and `that` song.

Les Miserables: Sunday Times review

I`ll be honest, I`m not a great fan of going to the cinema. I`d rather wait for the movie to come out on DVD and then settle down on the sofa with Pinot, popcorn and a pause button. I`m just wondering whether to make an exception for Les Miserables.

I haven`t been for several years-- since SoulBoy. Loved the film, but a man in a rustly jacket not only rustled all the way through it, but coughed and spluttered over me from start to finish.Nowhere to run (nowhere to hide......) It was vile.

Then there`s the er....delicate matter of shedding a tear or two in public. I know plenty of people who cry buckets during sad stories, trumpet-blow their noses matter of fact-ly at the end, and go home, having had a damn good night out.

I remember being taken to see a special, matinee screening of Gone With the Wind in London when I was probably about eight. There was my grandma, my mum, and me. It was mindblowingly good, and I was gripped all the way through; until the snuffling started. Mum first, then Grandma. Sniffing, snuffling, and the odd, muffled yelp of grief. Adults. Actually crying in public.Was know...ok? I slid down the itchy red tip up seat a bit and slyly clocked several more fully grown people with their faces half covered by rapidly dampening tissues. One woman`s shoulders were shaking. And not in a good way. I didn`t quite know what to make of it, but it felt like some kind of rite of passage that day. At the end, we emerged from the deep south, blinking at the Leicester Square sunlight. Mum and grandma sniffed loudly one more time, brushed themselves down, dabbed their pink noses with powder, asked me if I`d enjoyed myself, (err.....) and we headed for the tube.

I think I must have avoided `weepies` when going out on teenage dates. I ended up agreeing to see every kind of disaster movie ever made with the boy of the moment--just so I wouldn`t end up with `Maybe it`s Maybelline`-smeared cheeks.

`Weepies`, y`see, were limited to girls` nights out. You`d run through the listings, arm yourselves with mini packs of Kleenex and pots of Ben and Jerry`s, and go out for a damn good cry. Or, as I prefer to do these days, stay in and cry in private.

Les Mis is different though. I haven`t actually seen the whole show on stage yet. I did see an amazing version of it, performed by Shrewsbury Sixth Form College a few years ago. It was stunning. I realised then that I knew most of the songs--and that many of them made me cry. None more so, than `I dreamed a dream`. My mum was incredibly moved by this number too, when she saw the original stage show in London--probably soon after it opened. She knew at that time, ( though we didn`t) ....that she didn`t have long to live.

She was madly in love with a guy she`d married only seven years before--her boss--and she`d travelled the world with him. Stage shows in London were a special treat for her. It was only months after she died, when I was sorting out her things, that I found the words to `I Dreamed a Dream`, neatly written out in one of her notebooks. You couldn`t just look lyrics up on the internet then, so I guess she`d repeatedly stopped and started a recording of the song, jotting the words down in perfect shorthand, then transcribing them.

Finding the notes, and thinking about her state of mind at the time, was heartbreaking. And so, yep, the song gets me every time I hear it. I`ll definitely pack the standard `Kleenex and ice cream` survival kit if I see it at the cinema. Oh.....and I`ll go with the waterproof mascara option. But if you spot me getting the tissues me a favour and blow your nose loudly when I do. Thankyou.

 nice blog spot

 thanks Jane. Xx How are you? You MUST see Les Mis at cinema, everyone was in tears so you wouldn't be alone. It was amazing

 I wd love to see it but not at the mo if all in tears! May wait til it comes to Wem can sit with a G&T while watching then

RT “: Les Mis, mascara and me.”>got a lump in my throat already...

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