SALT LAKE SILLY — Family road trips can be brutal.
Endless hours with nothing but the road ahead of you and your little brother kicking your seat behind you while you resist the urge to shout “Are we there yet?” to your dad who’s already road raging because he’s been trapped between two semis for three exits can make time pass very, very slowly.
One Utah teen made the most of a 10-hour drive back from Montana over Memorial Day by lip-syncing all of the parts to “One Day More” from the world-famous musical “Les Miserables” and documenting the endeavor. Since posting to Facebook on Tuesday, the video from the Salt Lake City-area teen has accumulated 25,000 views and has been shared almost 400 times.
“Created by my normally reserved second child during a 10-hour drive from Montana to Utah,” father Justin Hill wrote on the Facebook post. “I love this.”
Justin and his wife Wendy didn’t notice their 15-year-old daughter Elisabeth was doing anything strange during the drive along I-15, returning from a visit to Justin’s brother’s family in Big Sky country.
“I guess I should be more aware of what’s going on inside the car, but only once I caught a sheepish grin from her while she was holding her iPod,” Justin Hill said. “Her little brother claims he noticed something going on, but they look pretty oblivious in the backgrounds.”
In the video — filmed and edited on an iPod — Elisabeth not only lip-syncs all the different parts, but changes hairstyles and facial expressions to sell the depictions. This includes moving her ponytail to make facial hair and adding a few fun filters to make the already colorful Thenardiers purple. She successfully morphs from Jean Valjean into the lovers Marius and Cosette, the forgotten Eponine, and from Enjolras to Javert.
Elisabeth is a piano player and choir member, according to her parents, and loves playing selections from her favorite musicals, including “Les Mis,” “Newsies” and “Wicked.” While usually more of an ensemble member, her parents were surprised to see her take to the spotlight in the video.
“She would never do this on stage, but she does like to do music and comedy videos with friends, usually for their eyes only,” Justin said. “Until now, only her family and close friends knew of her talent and flair.”
Elisabeth is a little confused why the video is taking Facebook by storm, her dad said. Predictably, there’s a lot of teenage typical eye rolling involved when her parents share the comments and view counts with the 15-year-old, who doesn’t have a Facebook page of her own.
“She asked, ‘Why do people think it’s so funny?’” Justin said.
Elisabeth’s dad has been saving his favorite comments from people sharing the video in a folder, which include captions like “Fabulous … there is more on the road ahead for this genuine talent…” and “I present my cousin’s daughter in a spectacular one-teenager-stuck-in-a-van-for-10-hours performance of Les Mis!”
One thing is for sure: This video is 2460-fun.
I’ll see myself out.