Thursday, August 30, 2007

‘Little Me’ by Neil Simon, Carolyn Leigh and Cy Coleman

30 August 2007

On Wednesday evening I was at the Bloomsbury Theatre in London to see the National Youth Music Theatre production of ‘Little Me’ by Neil Simon, Carolyn Leigh and Cy Coleman. This musical hasn’t been performed in London for over 20 years but it’s loads of fun – a highly silly cartoon saga telling the tale of Belle, a girl from the wrong side of the tracks striving, over four decades, to attain wealth, culture and social position in order to win the hand of the noble Noble Eggleston. This quest carries her through a host of familiar places and events (the First Word War trenches, the early Hollywood, the doomed ocean liner ‘SS Gigantic’ – you get the idea!) throughout which Belle manages to inadvertently steer the course of history in unfortunate directions and lose a remarkable number of husbands (there is a high fatality count!). Extremely silly, wonderfully funny and energetically performed by a high quality young (aged 10 – 19) cast of 35 actors and a 13-piece band. The two leads, Sarah Hagan and Dom Hodson were very good but there were show-stealing performances by Joe Mott, Alyn Hawke and Sam Hayward (including one of the funniest death bed scenes I can remember!) – all names to watch out for. NYMT is alive and well – I look forward to the next production.

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