REVIEW: THE RISE AND FALL OF LITTLE VOICE (Greenwich Theatre) ★★★★★
Jim Cartwright’s 1992 play Little Voice is famously known for the 1998 film adaption starring Jane Horrocks, Ewan McGregor and Michael Caine. It tells the story of the mouthy northerner, Mari Hoff, who lives in a derelict home and survives off of a diet of alcohol and sex. Her daughter LV (Little Voice) is a recluse, rarely leaving her bedroom and spending her days playing her late fathers records that were left to her. When Mari Hoff brings her latest squeeze Ray home for the night, he hears LV singing and (as a ‘talent scout’) is immediately more interested in who is upstairs, than in Mari herself. Deciding that LV could be a star performer at the local club, they force LV to perform in honour of her late father but will this sudden burst of confidence finally give her the strength she needs to stand up to her neglectful mother once and for all or will she squirrel back to her bedroom for the rest of her days?
The brilliant thing about this show is its characters. Each one is wonderful and when paired with a great actor makes this show the success it deserves to be. Sarah Moss is glorious as LV, the shy and timid girl with a million voices inside her frail frame. Julie Armstrong is hilarious as mother Mari. Such a great role, to be able to drunkenly fall around on stage being horrible to everyone and Julie is brilliant at it. Cally Lawrence as Sadie, Mari’s next door neighbour, is wonderfully funny as the friend with no self confidence who lets Mari walk all over her. Oliver Burkill gives the character of Billy the love it deserves and really lets us see that this is the first person who has had any love for LV since her father died.
The set design of this show is great. A filthy, unloved house which Mari pays as much attention to as she does her daughter. LV’s bedroom sits above the living room, neat and tidy and where she plays her records that her father left to her when he died.
THE RISE AND FALL OF LITTLE VOICE is a superb show that has been well cast and designed. Go see it!
Reviewed by West End Wilma
Photo: Josh Tomalin
THE RISE AND FALL OF LITTLE VOICE plays at Greenwich Theatre until 9 October 2016