This Little Life of Mine at Park Theatre
This Little Life of Mine is a musical that starts out with the classic archetypal premise for many a romantic West End spectacle: a young couple, brimming with hopes for the future, move into their first home together. The beaming lovers – Izzy (Kate Batter) and Jonesy (James Robinson) – look like they have it all: they are pretty, with careers, going from strength to strength, and they live in London zone two! Now that they’ve found their love nest, they’re keen to start building a family. Before too long, Izzy becomes pregnant; however, the prospect of a baby soon manages to turn things upside down for the hopeful parents-to-be in ways they weren’t expecting.
The new musical, written and directed by Michael Yale and scored by Charlie Round-Turner, has been described by publicists as a sort of fairytale for the “Tinder generation”. Indeed, it’s fun to watch seemingly mundane situations recognisable to most Londoners today – such as the difficulty of finding decent accommodation in the centre of town or the bewildering questions that follow your order of a simple black coffee at the local coffeehouse chain – glamorously and humorously portrayed through song. A standout performance happens early on when Izzy invites two of her metrosexual friends over (hilariously played by Greg Barnett and Caroline Deverill) who try to convince the unwilling couple about the virtues of multiple partners in the song Swing Swing Swing.
The star of the show, though, is Batter, whose frail, porcelain timber when she sings makes her ideal for the role of Izzy, a girl who is coming to terms with the fact that life doesn’t always go as planned. Robinson is also effective as Jonesy, adding dimension to an otherwise generic male lead. The basic set by Jack Henry James and understated costumes by Zahra Mansouri leave space for the actors and story to take centre stage, but the pacing in the first act is a bit too slow, and the story, accompanied by a lacklustre score, fails to fully grab you, however touching it may be.
Ultimately, This Little Life of Mine is sincere in its intentions but does not entirely convince.
This Little Life of Mine is at Park Theatre from 4th until 29th October 2016, for further information or to book visit here.
Watch the trailer for This Little Life of Mine here: