I met the leads in the cast afterwards in a local bar/restaurant thanks to musical director Derek Barnes.
When I noticed Christer Nerfont (Lucheni) and Cecilie Nerfont Thorgerssen (Elisabeth) holding hands it was Christer who said, "Don't worry, we're married!".
Norwegian Cecilie played Fantine in "Les Miserables" in
Karlstad opposite Christer as Valjean. Christer said, "I married her hundreds of
times in the show, and now I got to marry her in reality!"
They had travelled to Vienna over the summer and had visited Schönbrunn & the Hofburg and other places where Elisabeth had lived, and had really researched their parts. Christer had bought a copy of Lucheni's biography in German, and had tried to read it, before realising in "Elisabeth" Lucheni is really the storyteller - it's not the real Lucheni at all.
Patrik Martinsson (Death) was also in the Karlstad
production of "Les Miserables", but has an impressive roll-call of appearances
including "Jesus Christ Superstar", "Godspell", and "My Fair
Both he, Christer, & Cecilie had surfed the Internet for ideas on "Elisabeth" and had seen my Internet site, as well as that of Jennifer Barber.
Also there was Producer Camilla Nordström who told me the theatre had had faxes and e-mails from all over, including many from Japan.
Derek Barnes told me these were
the musical stars of Scandinavia, and how disappointed he was that the Scandinavian
premiere of "Elisabeth" had had so relatively little press coverage. I
complimented him on the excellent musical performance, and the powerful intimate style of
the production, for which Ronny Danielsson was responsible.
The "Elisabeth" production is not expected to many any
money - the theatre is too small to make money really, and is subsidised - but the quality
of the performances and general production is high.