WORTH A LOOK?: ****
WHERE?: London Coliseum
WHEN?: 25/9/20 RUNTIME: 50 minutes (no interval)
The great singers make what they do seem effortless, that anyone could do what they do, and so it is with Carrie Hope Fletcher.
- Read on for reasons including an introduction to Hope Fletcher’s next West End starring role in Cinderella
Hope Fletcher was due to open next month as leading lady in Andrew Lloyd Webber’s adaptation with Killing Eve‘s Emerald Fennell of Cinderella at the Gillian Lyne Theatre although COVID-19 has pushed that back until April 2021.
She first came to our attention in June 2018 when she graduated to her first West End leading role in Heathers: The Musical and we said of her then that she ‘has real star quality’.
Tonight her performance at the London Coliseum is being beamed to us by Stream Theatre and Hope Fletcher says: ‘It feels very bittersweet. It’s so wonderful to be here but I wish these seats were filled with you guys now sat at home.’
An early song is Fight For Me from Heathers and Hope Fletcher explains it was a track Rob Houchen suggest she covered on her YouTube channel when she was appearing in Les Miserables opposite his Marius.
‘I never even expected to audition for what was a US show,’ explains Hope Fletcher. ‘But composer Larry O’Keefe looked it up and liked it.’
Hope Fletcher is perhaps best known for playing multiple roles in productions of Les Miserables and her version of arguably its best known song I Dreamed A Dream is the stand-out moment of this show. What makes her such a talented singer is that she is able to both sing technically difficult material and make it appear effortless but also to make clear every word, vital for musical theatre.
She is the only British actor to have played the roles of both Young Éponine and Éponine in Les Mis. She says: ”Many moons ago I played little Eponine and vowed to come back to play Eponine and realised that it might never become reality but luckily I was in the right place at the right time when they were looking for someone like me.’
In 2019 she auditioned for the part of Fantine in Les Mis with tonight’s accompanying pianist Lee Thompson at the keys.
Another highlight is There Are Worse Things That I Could Do from Grease which hints at the more playful and knowing side of roles like Veronica Sawyer from Heathers.
Last week we reviewed Sharon D.Clarke in this Tonight at the London Coliseum series and the song selections are very different with Hope Fletcher drawing for the most part on American musicals inspired by films.
She met her partner Oliver Ormson when they toured together in The Addams Family and they perform duets You Matter To Me from Waitress and In A Crowd Of Thousands from Anastasia movingly here.
Introducing the final song (Journey To The Past from Anastasia), Hope Fletcher refers to the old pair of shoes she is wearing.’If you’d told 16-year-old me that I’d be wearing these shoes on stage at the London Coliseum, I would have jumped for joy.’
It’s always a joy to see her perform and, although we can’t wait to see her in Cinderella, she will go to that ball soon and this gig was a fun and entertaining diversion to tide us over until then.