Instantly I knew that was the song, but I didn't know if this was a crazy idea or if we could even pull it off. I immediately texted my friend, Alec Sulkin, who I write with on Family Guy and who is also a big "Les Miz" fan, something like, "Thinking of doing surprise performance for Brad of One Day More at party. Would you be in it?" And his response was, "Love it. Yes. Already nervous." So that decided it for me. At least I had two of the parts already cast. Not to mention I've never even sang before, much less in public (and on TV). Megan Mullally and I are friends from Will & Grace, and I adore her. We were having lunch around this time, and I told her what I was planning, and she loved the idea, and I was like, "Good, would you play Eponine?" After that it was our friend James Lecesne to play Thenardier and Brad's college friend from Canada, Trish Lahde, as Cosette and our writers' assistant at Family Guy, Jonah Platt, as Marius and Lindsay's dad, Philip Myers (who is a musical theater performer), as Jean Valjean, and finally as Madame Thenardier I called Brad's mom, Debbie, and I asked her if she would be interested, and she immediately said yes. The chorus consisted of our friends and family.
It became quite an undertaking. We also worked with Flash Mob America and my vocal coach, Jerry Sternbach. Everybody had to learn the song on their own. And we had only two mornings to rehearse for about 90 minutes each time. And we had to get the sound, lighting, blocking, and choreography down. It was very intense and, truly, the night before the party I thought I had made a horrible mistake and this was too big a production to pull off successfully with so little time to prepare.
And I was so afraid of disappointing all the people who agreed to participate in this, much less Brad. I really felt like I was starting to unravel. But the morning of the party during the second rehearsal (after several microphones broke and we had to figure out how and when we were going to put these microphones on during the party) something clicked and I thought we just might pull this off.