Sweetly stunning success - The Rise And Fall Of Little Voice, review by Kate Harwood

The ambitious staging and production of The Rise and Fall of Little Voice was a piece of cake for Hebden Bridge Little Theatre this week, the polished cast holding its audience from the start.

Shy young recluse LV is obsessed with her late father’s old record collection shutting herself away in her bedroom with a Dansette player, perfecting her singing and imitating her idols.

Brash mother, Mari is driven to distraction by this oddball daughter until her new man, wide-boy talent scout Ray Say, appears on the scene and sees LV as his last chance to make it big.

Helen Forsyth’s Mari is a masterclass in movement and comedy. In your face but providing pitch-perfect pathos when required. Her scenes with Sadie, played with glorious deadpan humour by Lynn Lord are classic.

Steve Marsden’s shifty Ray Say could teach Michael Caine a thing or two and Andy Bean’es Billy (LV’s suitor) shone with his boyish, naive charm.

Stuart Davison was the ideal choice for Mr Boo, the gritty Glaswegian nightclub owner and newcomer, Gringo Hodges, was heartwarming as the telephone man.

Viki Kent plays a beautiful, understated LV showing a glorious innocence and subtle undercurrent of bubbling passion. Her vocals are sweetly stunning. A triumph.

This show, directed with panache and humour by Alan Stockdill, will make your heart soar.

On until Saturday, June 22, evening shows start at 7.30pm and Saturday’s matinee is at 2.30pm.