The Rise and Fall of Little Voice - Review by AboutMyArea
|Published: 12th March 2013 11:38|
The audience at last night's opening performance of The Rise and Fall of Little Voice got a chance to take part in the action as they arrived at Boo's Club aka The Kings Theatre.
Giving the feeling of a working men's club, the audience were invited to take part in a raffle, play a game of bingo and join in with some banter.
Of course, all this was a prelude to the main performance, the story of Little Voice (LV), a painfully shy young girl who has an amazing ability to mimic her favourite singers. From Judy Garland to Tina Turner, Jess Robinson has a wonderful talent and took us through a host of divas from past times. Her performance in the second half of the show was truely stunning.
It took a while to get there though. Fans of the film will know that LV only sings in her room to the records left to her by her late father. Those precious records are the only thing she has of him but her alcoholic mother, Mari, doesnt' feel the same way. In fact, it is Mari's boyfriend, Ray Say, who recognises her talent and persuades her to show the world, exploiting her for his own gain and using Mari as a means to get to her.
Beverley Callard who plays LV's mother, Mari Hoff, was delighted to be asked by director Jim Cartwright to play the role. As she explained last night, Jim told her that Mari's role is the juggernaut that drives the show and this is true. With her crude jokes, cackling laugh and sometimes fruity language, her role is the main narrative throughout the play. Funny, sad and sometimes just plain cruel, she gave a magnificent performance.
Beverely said, "Rather than just being a caricature, she is a great woman to play because she's a grieving widow and she loved her husband. She would never have stayed faithful to him but she loved him in her way. He was boring but he would have always been there for her so she would have always gone back home to him. So suddenly he wasn't there and of course, he had this record collection which he and his daughter shared together, so when he dies Mari misses him and LV loses all communication with her mum. They love each other but they don't know how to communicate. To play Mari is amazing."
The play is about love, loss and human nature but there are lots of funny moments including a comical celebration dance by Mari and her neighbour, Sadie, to Jackson 5's "I Want You Back".
Ray Quinn plays the role of Billy, LV's love interest. It was an understated performance, but rather sweet and his character helps LV find her own voice - and what a voice it is.
The Rise and Fall of Little Voice is running until Saturday 16th March. For tickets call the Box Office on 023 92 828282 or visit the website at www.kings-southsea.com .