Friday, July 22, 2011

Piaf - Review- People's Theatre

Time for another guest reviewer...this time Denise! I 'met' Denise through the pages of Twitter, she always seemed to be remarking on things, and gave me quite a few #ff's. When I saw that one day she was going to the same play as me(albeit in a different town), I asked her opinion on it, and it was very honest.. so she is now going to do an honest account of the show that I put her way.

The Peoples Theatre, 

Edith Piaf was a woman whose astonishing talent lifted her from the streets of Paris and placed her into a society in which she was never to feel truly comfortable. In a series of scenes, almost like snapshots, Pam Gems play shows the many conflicting sides to the enigma that was Piaf. From the guttural foul mouthed street girl to the sublime artiste, we are shown a women struggling to deal with life – desperate to be loved, surrounded by people and yet seemingly always lonely.  Each scene is punctuated by the songs which brought her such fame. 

It’s a tall order for any actress to play the part of such an iconic character but Jenny Strawson steps up and does not disappoint. She performs the songs with passion, and it is possible to believe that she is Piaf.  The rest of the cast ably support her performance, creating the array of characters that flowed through Piaf’s world; some there only fleetingly others such as Toine, and Charles- more constant. However, the title of the play is PIAF, and this is undoubtedly a play about one character. Strawson is on stage for almost the whole of the play, sustaining the performance to the end, through the bawdiness, the love, the tragedy and recklessness that was the life of Piaf.

The play runs until the 23rd whether you are a fan of Piaf or not it is well worth a visit!

Denise Sparrowhawk

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