★★★☆☆ Park Theatre, This Little Life of Mine
Michael Yale (Book and Direction) creates a delightful production that depicts the ups and downs of an ordinary life.
Jonesy and Izzy are young, in love and just moved into a new tiny flat in London. They live an ordinary life, with friends and jobs. However, as normal for ordinary people, things happen. Rather their funny incidents, with their friends wanting to swing with them or showing them what Tinder is about. As well as sad moments, like having difficulties to get pregnant which puts a strain on the relationship. From the beginning of the show it is clear that this new musical has a lot of potential. With songs like ‘Hey Prince Charming’ and ‘Just one more’ ( A song about one cheeky drink at the pub turning into many), which we’ve all experienced before.
Greg Barnett is the comedic highlight, playing Raphael the barrista and bartender. Kate Batter has a wonderful voice and shows vulnerability playing Izzy , who’s desperate to become pregnant. Caroline Deverill shows great versatility playing a range of characters, from the best friend to the mother-in-law. Jonesy, played by James Robinson, shows a lot of heart. The duet between him and Izzy, is incredibly touching and is a perfect way to show their problems as a couple, their loss of connection and disparity.
Some of the characters are flawed and are missing substance. While only showing the surface, it still feels believable and their feelings and problems are easily relatable. As a millennial, I expected this show to mirror a contemporary couple’s lifestyle. However, it wasn’t modern enough for me. It was great to see references to Doctor Who or seeing them take a selfie and things that millennials do and say, but it was simply not enough. Sometimes, it wasn’t really believable either. Izzy wasn’t dressed as hip and young Londoner and not knowing what Tinder was, even if you’re in a relationship, doesn’t particularly scream millennial.
Yet, this heartfelt story is wonderfully entertaining and Charlie Round-Turner’s music makes this ordinary musical quite extraordinary.