Saturday, 29 October 2016

Review: This Little Life Of Mine, Park

"Come on don't you keep me waiting
Today's the day I'm ovulating"

The clunkiness of the above rhyming couplet is a little symptomatic of This Little Life Of Mine, a well-meaning but mis-intentioned new musical receiving its premiere here at the Park. Written and directed by Michael Yale and scored by Charlie Round-Turner, it follows the regular lives of regular London couple Izzy and Jonesy and that really is just about it. Self-described as a "musical drama", there's a singular lack of the latter here which means that the show just ends up dull.

Finding the magic in the mundane is the stock in trade of many an insightful piece of writing but ultimately, all This Little Life... manages to do is extract the ordinary out of the extraordinary. Yes, there's chuckles to be had in recognising some of the more exasperating aspects of modern life in the capital, extortionate house prices and needlessly expansive coffee menus to name just a couple, but a show that aims to show just how regular life can be needs to aim higher than replicating said regularness (regularity doesn't seem right there...).

Round-Turner's music is pleasant to listen to but could do with a tad more dynamism, especially since that is comparatively lacking in book and direction, the first act in particular is stultifyingly paced. Kate Batter and James Robinson are proficient as the leads but as with Will and Grace, it's the supporting couple of Caroline Deverill and Greg Barnett who steal the plaudits as a range of supplementary characters from the stereotypical to the sublime. A musical that has some potential but could usefully do with some more development before resurfacing. 

Running time: 2 hours (with interval)
Booking until 29th October

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