THIS LITTLE LIFE OF MINE, 4Star****, London, To 39 10 16

Music by Charlie Round-Turner Book by Michael Yale
4Stars ****

Park 90, The Park Theatre to 29 October
Clifton Terrace, London N4 3JP.
Tues – Sat 7,45 pm Mat Thur & Sat 3.15 pm
Runs 2hr One interval.

TICKETS: 020 7870 6876.

Summer and sunshine and falling in and out of love
Laughter and tears and perhaps more gynaecological information that one really wants to have abound in this fresh and charming new musical about a young couple setting up home in London. Charlie Round-Turner’s score is a delight and gets beautifully performed by the musical director Thomas Duchan on the keyboards and cellist Daisy Heath. Maybe a little less volume at times would help because talented though the cast are some of them have small voices and this is an unmiked show. A shade more pp and less ff would help as sometimes the words get lost, and Michael Yale’s lyrics, especially for the funny numbers, being very good indeed this is a pity.

The story line is simple. Izzy (Kate Batter) and Jonesy (James Robinson) set up home, entertain friends, have a hilarious encounter with a couple of swingers – he is tempted, she is not – and try hard to have a baby. As everybody else – from Izzy’s randy Australian colleague Tina to a manic Brazilian barista called Raphael – Caroline Deverill and Greg Barnett have a whale of a time and duly deliver the comic goods.

There is a splendid seduction scene, which includes Raphael, now a barman, when Tina and Jonesey get drunk in the pub and sing a rousing song about having “one more drink”. Things do not, of course, go well for the rather twee young couple. Her pregnancy is not real, he takes it even more badly than she does, while she gets determined to become pregnant again and becomes obsessed with the calendar.

To be honest as the evening goes on one rather ceases to care whether the pair can overcome their problems, but just when things threaten to go off the boil the assorted monsters played by Barnett and Deverill come to the rescue. Their predatory swingers are a special joy. Jonesy may be a bit of a mother’s boy wimp and Izzy clearly destined to be as much of a control freak as the mother in law she cannot stand but Kate Batter and James Robinson have abundant charm, enough keep one hoping all will be well. And there is the music. As good a score as one has heard all year.

Raphael/Dom/Tom/Steve/Doctor: Greg Barnett.
Izzy: Kate Batter.
Tina/Fiona/Margaret/Receptionist: Caroline Deverill.
Jonesy: James Robinson.

Director: Michael Yale.
Set & Costume Design: Zahra Mansouri.
Musical Director: Thomas Duchan.
Lighting Design: Julian McCreadt.
Projection Design: Jack Henry James.
Choreographer: Tracy Allsop.

2016-10-06 09:42:19

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