JIM Cartwright's 'urban fairy tale' of an ordinary Northern girl with an extraordnary talent is currently on a UK tour.

This modern production is at Liverpool Playhouse only until Saturday.

The Olivier award-winning comedy drama became a Golden Globe hit film with Michael Caine and Jane Horrocks playing the title role.

Does this comedy with its very dark dialogue and bleak moments work well on stage?

The answer is a resounding 'yes' and that is down to a cracking cast.

It maybe a bit dated in places, but Little Voice ultimately still has something to say about family struggles, friendships, loyalty and trust.

We see a mother and daughter clash - two very different personalities.

Wirral Globe:

Christina Bianco in 'The Rise and Fall of Little Voice' (Pamela Raith Photography)

Mum Mari is brash, boozy and brassy with a dubious vocabulary while Little Voice - or LV as she is called throughout - doesn't say much but when she does - she speaks and sings volumes.

She spends her time in her bedroom listening and recreating in pitch-perfect style the vinyl records given to her by her father.

She plays homage to her chosen divas from Judy Garland to Shirley Bassey.

Mari, meanwhile, is dating a shady small time club owner Ray Say. Strange name - strange guy who has his sights set on making the most of LV's gift.

Wirral Globe:

Shobna Gulati and Fiona Mulvaney The Rise and Fall of Little Voice (Pamela Raith Photography)

His two-faced approach from Mr Nice to Mr Nasty is one of many conflicts in the two and half hour production directed by Bronnagh Logan on a two tier set - a disected run-down dolls house.

Does Little Voice want to be a star - can she find her 'own' voice in the process? She is guided by gentle lighting engineer and fellow dreamer Billy (Akshay Gulati).

Coronaton Street star Shibna Gulati plays the consistently bewildered and flawed Mari and Emmerdale favourite Ian Kelsey is the dubious spiv-like show biz manager Ray. They both gie 100 poer cent.

What starts off as a seemingly loving relationship soon turns into one of aggression and violence.

In the title role is Christina Bianco who is simply outstanding from the moment she sings.

One stunning sequence in Mr Boo's nightclub complete with tacky sparkling curtain backdrop sees reluctant performer LV shine in a cabaret setting.

We hear fautless tributes to Edith Piaf, Liza Minneli, Billie Holiday and Julie Andrewsand more. A vocal tour-de-force.

It is a mini-concert within the play and a highlight displaying Christina's remarkable voice which is far from Little.

Globe verdict: Entertaining revival - four stars

The production is on until Saturday 0151 709 4776