PLAYHOUSE: It’s great to have you back for another Playhouse production! But this isn’t your first time being in Les Mis, right?
Ali Littrell Finstrom: That’s right! I was blessed to play the role of Cosette in a production at Chanhassen Dinner Theaters back in 2007. Being a part of Les Misérables is a dream for many performers, so getting to do it twice is unbelievable!
PH: You play Fantine in the show – what does this role mean to you?
Ali: Fantine is a wonderful role and I feel grateful to have the chance to play her. But the show itself has much more meaning to me. I love what the show stands for; forgiveness, love, grace, and redemption. It is a beautiful and powerful show and I am excited to share it with the Northland!
PH: What research did you do to prepare for this role?
Ali: I was eight years old when I first saw Les Misérables so I have loved this show for many years. As I said previously, this is not the first time I have done this show. Last time, it ran for 6 months! So I know the show forwards and backwards. This time around however, I committed to reading the Victor Hugo novel. There is so much more detail and background that I was able to apply to my role having read the book.
PH: What was your biggest challenge in playing this part?
Ali: The biggest challenge would have to be Fantine’s emotional journey. I am only on stage for a total of about 25 minutes, but it is an intense 25 minutes! Being a mother of three small children, I can relate to how desperate Fantine is to provide and care for her child, Cosette.
PH: What has been your favorite part about this production? Or a favorite part of the show?
Ali: The best part of this production is the fact that it is a collaboration of some of the best artists in the community. From the directors and performers to the crew and orchestra, many people are working very hard to make this show something that will raise the bar for productions in Duluth. As far as my favorite part in the show; I would have to say the very end when the entire cast sings all together in the big finale!
PH: Any special thanks or shout outs?
Ali: Always grateful to my loving, supportive husband Erik and our three sweet munchkins Kayleigh, Andrew, and Emily! Being wife and mommy is my favorite role to play!!
Don’t forget to get your tickets, we open next week! You can purchase in person at the DECC Ticket Office or online by clicking the button below. And check back for more Q&A sessions with the cast!