WATCH: A retweet from Russell Crowe sees Edinburgh Les Miserables star Jeff Leyton score more than 10,000 views in less than 24 hours

WHEN international musical theatre star Jeff Leyton was sent a new backing by musician Jim Sheridan, the Pilton-born star thought it would be nice to add his vocals to the recording before sending it back with his thoughts.
Jeff LeytonJeff Leyton
Jeff Leyton

The song was Do You Hear The People Sing from the smash-hit Broadway and West End musical Les Miserables, one Jeff thought particularly poignant at the present moment as theatres around the world are forced to remain closed due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

That recording was then posted on social media by Jim where it has now had more than 10,000 views in less than 24 hours after it was retweeted by Russell Crowe, who played Javert in the movie version of the musical.

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"Jim did the recording with his new orchestral equipment," explains Jeff. "I heard it and thought, 'What a fabulous production.' So I recorded my voice in my home studio and sent it to him via wetransfer. He said, 'Wow! How about I put this all together.'

"He’s a fabulous musician and what he can do with technology amazes me. After the recording was mixed, Jim put it on Twitter and Facebook. Russell Crowe heard it and shared it on his Twitter and it just went mad."

Jeff, who holds the record of being the longest running Jean Valjean, the lead character in Les Mis, having played the role more than 3,500 times over a 13 year period, admits he has been overwhelmed by the response the recording has received.

"I didn't expect to hear any more about it, I just did it for the craic. When I heard that Russell Crowe had retweeted it, I thought 'WTF!', excuse my bad language, but after Cher, it was a case of , 'Here we go again'," he laughs.

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Jeff is referring to a 2013 tweet in which he sang the show-stopping Bring Him Home from the same musical, which Cher retweeted, commenting, 'Jeff Leyton's rendition of Bring Him Home is proof... God, gazed down at him, touched his lips and said, "Here, my child, this is my gift to you".'

After the latest celebrity endorsement, Jeff reveals, "I've sent Russell Crowe a message thanking him for the retweet and saying that if he fancies reprising his Javert to sing The Confrontation from Les Mis, I'm up for singing it with him."

He adds, "Russell has 2.7 million people following him, so he has the clout. People are interested in what these mega-stars like and listen too. I appreciate them watching and find it really cool that they do."

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