Ripley to join ‘Les Miz’

Tony-nominated thesp to take on Fantine

NEW YORK — Joining a flotilla of big-name cast replacements in Broadway musicals next month, Tony nominee Alice Ripley will assume the role of Fantine in “Les Miserables” beginning Sept. 8.

Ripley earned a Tony nom, along with her co-star Emily Skinner, as best actress in a musical for last season’s “Side Show,” in which they played Siamese twins.

Ripley made her Broadway debut in “The Who’s Tommy” and also starred in “Sunset Boulevard” and “King David,” which inaugurated Disney’s New Amsterdam Theater. She played the role of Fantine in the national tour of “Les Miz” in 1993.

Also in September, London cast star Ute Lemper replaces Bebe Neuwirth in “Chicago”; Toni Braxton and Meshach Taylor join the cast of Disney’s “Beauty and the Beast”; and Jennifer Jason Leigh takes over for Natasha Richardson in “Cabaret” beginning Thursday.

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