Touched ... Like a Virgin
For Lesley, that's an ideal she always seems to fall short of. As she grows up, Madonna becomes the blueprint for her own life, mirroring the singer's personal reinventions, as Lesley goes from council house child wanting no more than a semi-detached, a husband and a bunch of kids, via Oxford University, New York's Met Bar and to a fertility clinic in Sweden. As it turns out, where Lesley ends up is not really that far from where she always wanted to be.
Sadie Frost's Lesley is smart, likeable and funny, with a keen sense of what she's doing and where she's going wrong. Frost demonstrates fine comic timing as she convincingly takes the audience through Lesley's story from teenaged virgin to grown-up mother-to-be. The story is underscored by songs from Madonna's back catalogue as sung by David Wickenden (4 Poofs and a Piano), ably accompanied on piano and guitar by Ben Osborn. Wickenden doesn't have a particularly good or strong voice, but he gets away with it through a mix of charm and camp while dressed as an alternative undertaker in dark suit with silver sequined shoes.
James Phillips's direction keeps the pace up as the action moves around the small cabaret-style space. Among the humour, there's a message about the pressures and conflicts of feminism, but it's woven in with skill so as not to frighten off the blokes in the audience.
Half-play, half-cabaret comedy, Zoe Lewis's Touched Like A Virgin is a delicious encounter for a summer evening.