Lili la Scala treats us to an hour of
wartime songs accompanied by her trusty pianist. Everything from
George Formby to Vera Lynn is featured including the delectable 'A
Nightingale Sang In Berkely Square'. Interspersed between the music
are prerecorded readings of letters sent by modern day soldiers
killed in combat.
Although nervous, la Scala has a
delicious voice with the perfect tone and phrasing for the genre.
However her justification for including the racist song 'Mr
Wu's A Window Cleaner Now' in her set is weak. The juxtaposition of
singing and letters is intelligent yet fails to flow as seamlessly as
presumably intended. A concluding mini-sermon on war appears as more of
an afterthought than a unifying message.
Ultimately a good director is
needed to realise the full potential of this thoroughly original show. One
to look out for in 2011.