Photo: Nick Brittain

Bernadette Robinson is an extraordinary chanteuse with a captivating stage presence and the ability to channel singers from the past such as Judy Garland, Billie Holiday and Maria Callas. She opens her mouth and it’s breathtaking. So far, so Stars in their Eyes. What elevates this show above simple impersonation cabaret is Joanna Murray-Smith’s warm, witty and wise script that envelops the musical numbers.

Photo: Nick Brittain

The premise is that five ordinary women (all played by Robinson) recount incidences where they met or were affected by a singing mega star. For example: a wise cracking reporter interviews Billie Holiday, a Nottinghamshire school librarian recounts her father’s encounter with Edith Piaf and a broken-hearted bathroom attendant meets Judy Garland in the loo. Naturally, there’s then a burst of song to illustrate each piece.

Photo: Nick Brittain

Robinson is a compelling presence and carries each monologue well. Yes, the tales are a bit silly from time to time and are occasionally paper-thin but they’re lyrically written and are beautiful to hear. All five women are improbably wise, imparting their take on love, life and loss but it doesn’t jar. If you love a torch singer then there’s a lot to love here.

Songs for Nobodies, Ambassadors Theatre, West Street, WC2H 9ND. Tickets £25-£75, until 23 February 2019.

from Londonist http://bit.ly/2QFUgK2