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“THE RISE & FALL OF LITTLE VOICE”
Once again the Rep gave us an impeccable production, with good performances from a diverse cast. As is always the case with an Alan Goss production, there is meticulous attention to detail, however there was one small point that didn’t ring entirely true – Mari went out in underwear with a coat, and came back fully dressed – without a discernible passing of time. It was only as the dialogue started that we became aware that it was a different time. This is probably nit picking, but small things take on big proportions when we only expect the best from a company!
I must compliment Mr Goss on his set – getting a whole house including an upstairs
bedroom, on the Little Theatre stage was a feat in itself – but it all worked extremely
well, allowing the characters plenty of room to move around freely. The set was
also very well-
Lighting was good, very imaginative for the club and at the end for the fire, and also the aftermath of the fire, subtle but specific enough to show us the cast and their varying degrees of grief.
So, let us now look at the cast – Kate John played Little Voice, I liked what she did with the part, and although she spoke quietly it was always audible, and the contrast to when she sang was excellent.... and what a voice, it lent itself well to the music and whilst not an outright impression Kate got the essence of the singers well, along with mannerisms, so that there was no doubt who they were meant to be. Very well done. I liked Kate and the way she interpreted the character, you could identify with how she became how she was, and her relationship with her mother. She got the shy withdrawn nature of the girl, along with her passion for music.
Mari the mother was a typical loud-
Ray Say, Mari’s one time boyfriend and wannabee entrepreneur, was played with a certain rather sleazy style by Joe Butcher – he certainly looked the part with his blonde coifed hair. I particularly liked his rendition of the Roy Orbison song It’s Over – so much restrained passion and meaning, a superb moment in time that was very emotive.
Susan Young played Sadie, Mari’s down-
Josh Thompson played Mr Boo, the nightclub owner – Josh turns up so regularly that you’d think you’d get used to him, but he turned in yet another character, the rough round the edges Northern club owner, who thinks he’s the bee’s knees, getting Ray and LV dancing to his tune. Liked the shoes by the way Josh, and the portrayal was good as well!
Dave Hillman played the small part of the phone engineer, but I thought he got the accent well – and also showed some animation in his portrayal.
Finally, we had newcomer to the Rep, Joe Hawkins, playing the introverted Billy,
who took a shine to LV and hopefully rescued her in more ways than one. Joe got
the reticence and natural shyness of the lad well, showing animation when talking
about his lights, as LV did when talking about her dad and music – so a well-
I thought the bows were a little unimaginative, with those lovely levels of the set, there could have been something a little more interesting.
There was real emotion to be found in the script, which the cast brought out well, it wasn’t entirely perfect for me – but it came fairly close, and there wasn’t a weak link in the cast. Act 2 seemed to have more pace and intent than Act 1, and I found it gripped me more – there were also some lovely contrasts between the calm and the storm of both situations and characters, which brought up the interest levels, and made it a production that I enjoyed.
“THE RISE & FALL OF LITTLE VOICE”
review date: 26th Nov 2013
Little Theatre, Dunstable
Director: Alan Goss MD: Chris Young