With a minimalist set the focus has to be on the actors and Little Theatre Company Youth did not hesitate in showing a packed Brewhouse opening night that they could rise to the challenge.
From the opening cinema shot facing the audience to the climactic lament it was the actors who commanded the attention.
The ensemble provides a dramatic chorus to the main protagonists as Eva Duarte rises from wannabe actress to wife of the President, eschewing the middle classes who held power in favour, of her beloved descamisados.
Katie Ireland took on the challenging title role of Evita and played it superbly. Demonstrating all the wiles that Eva used to manipulate her way to the heart of the government but at the same time conveying the fragility of a life rejected by her father’s second family.
Jack Dent’s Peron showed he was ambivalent about the power of the presidency but because he loved Eva he was prepared to commit himself to it and her.
Those she used on her way to power were well portrayed with Oliver Last as a suitably sleazy Magaldi.
Georga Ratcliffe as the Mistress, only had one song – Another Suitcase in Another Hall – but she delivered it brilliantly as Eva continued her rise to prominence.
It is rewarding to see that the conveyor belt of talent that is amateur dramatics in Burton continues to turn out both the shows and the actors that will keep live theatre at the forefront of the arts in the town.
With more than 20 awards to its credit the Tim Rice, Andrew Lloyd Webber musical contains many well-known songs including Don’t Cry For Me Argentina, Oh What a Circus, and the previously mentioned Another Suitcase in Another Hall.
The Little Theatre Youth Company’s production of Evita, directed by John Bowness, is onstage in the auditorium at Burton’s Brewhouse Arts Centre each night this week at 7.30pm with a matinee on Saturday at 2.30pm. For tickets contact the Brewhouse box office on 01283 508100.