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  The Rise And Fall of Little Voice at Theater Wit

The Rise And Fall of Little Voice

Theater Wit
1229 W Belmont Ave Chicago

The play (also a 1998 film starring Michael Caine) takes place in a small factory town in Northern England, circa 1989. "Little Voice", or LV, is cripplingly shy. She spends her time in her bedroom, listening to her late father's records - Judy Garland, Edith Piaf, Marilyn Monroe, et al. When LV's mother, Mari, starts dating a talent scout, he discovers that LV can impersonate the singers she loves. When he puts LV up on stage at a local cabaret club, the two women are forced to compromise what sustains them. Cartwright's play is wildly funny, dark and biting.

Presented by No Stakes Theater Project

Thru - Sep 5, 2015

Price: $13.50-$34.50

Show Type: Comedy/Drama

Box Office: 773-975-8150

Running Time: 2hrs; one intermission

  The Rise And Fall of Little Voice Reviews
  • Highly Recommended
  • Recommended
  • Somewhat Recommended
  • Not Recommended

Chicago Reader - Highly Recommended

"...Little Voice, has a peculiar talent, some very bad things hit the fan. Spiritual kin to Shelagh Delaney's A Taste of Honey, the play offers marvelous opportunities that are snapped up by the entire cast-but especially Rebecca Sohn as the monstrous mom and Scarlet Sheppard as Little Voice, a kind of pop oracle possessed by divas like Judy Garland and Edith Piaf. Marssie Mencotti has an irresistible turn as an old lady weirdly reminiscent of onetime SNL cast member Tim Kazurinsky."
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Tony Adler

Windy City Times - Recommended

"...The actor playing Little Voice must credibly impersonate the greats. Fortunately, Scarlett Sheppard has the chops and does dead-on soundalikes of a half-dozen notable vocalists. Her voice isn't huge but she's convincing and even astonishing at moments. The real difficulty with the play is that Little Voice is mainly a cypher. Who is she? At 15 or 16 she doesn't go to school, has no job, never leaves the house, has no friends and appears to have no real-world capabilities. The play may be a story of survival, with Mari at the end of a journey while Elvie is at a beginning, but Cartwright ultimately begs the question."
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Jonathan Abarbanel

ChicagoCritic - Highly Recommended

"...Brady has also assembled a fine team of designers. Grant Sabin's realistic set design captures the drudgery of Mari and LV's existence, and Moriah Lee Turner's costumes, which include details like LV wearing her father's shirts, clearly signal each character's background. Late in the story is an inevitable electrical disaster, which presented a challenge Brady and her designers overcame beautifully. She also deserves credit for guiding the tone of this piece from comedic with touches of sweetness to something quite dark. The Rise and Fall of Little Voice was classified as a comedy by the Olivier Awards, but that's a very awkward fit. The show is hard to pin down, but in the No Stakes Theater Project's hands, it is fascinating. Hopefully, their method will produce more successes like this one."
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Jacob Davis

Around The Town Chicago - Recommended

"...This is a new company that has taken on a rough show for their initial production, but has come through with a solid cast and wonderful tech people. The only problem is the off stage curtains where actors enter and exit shedding light onto the stage. Mike Durst's lighting works well with the set and Joe Court has the sound under control. Paul Deziel has assembles a great number of props and I am not sure, but may have a liquor store on the side as well as a great record collection. This could be a great quiz for the younger theater audience members. What is an LP record?"
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Alan Bresloff

Chicago Theatre Review - Recommended

"...As a first-time outing for a brand new company, No Stakes Theater Project makes an auspicious debut with this difficult play. Well-cast and impressively directed and acted, Jim Cartwright’s play offers challenges for even the most accomplished theatre company. Not only requiring a talented cast playing difficult roles, as well as supplying a variety of difficult technical demands, the script itself is choppy. The second act includes a few false endings that make for a bumpy ride on the way to its final payoff. Still, the special magic that occurs whenever Little Voice astounds the audience with her unexpected musical impersonations is worth the journey."
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Colin Douglas

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