4 star review by Ben Ludlow

I think I fell in love. What did you say? What’s her name? This is Anna Vanosi. And where does she come from? She comes from Milan. She is 35 years old and she is a classical singer. And pianist. And a trained actress (Edinburgh Napier). She traveled all over Asia. What do you mean, how do I know? She said. In her one woman show, Late Bloomers’ Tales: running through time through songs, where she talks to us through her life story so far and intersperses that with songs.

Eccentric but enchanting. A true Italian diva

Okay, she’s a bit… eccentric. She sings baby santa claus at one point and in another song, she shakes the maracas. She says she smoked hash in Asia and I’m not going to contradict that. But she is adorable. Eccentric but enchanting. A true Italian diva. She’s the kind of person you want to jump out of a cake when you get home from a hard day of transplant. Or she could address international business people as a motivational speaker. I can see her maybe on a reality show, finally discovered after years on the Free Fringe. Maybe she’ll be the next star to be revealed on Strictly.

She says wonderful things. She asks, “How old is your soul?” and says hers feels old. She claims that “the world is full of assholes who are only too happy to tell you that Santa Claus doesn’t exist”. Then she sings What serums, serums. At some point it gets a bit awkward. No, not the moment she talks about her vibrator while playing the song good vibes background. This is when she says, “Your penis is getting bigger and bigger.” Is she looking at me or at the single boy two rows ahead? Luckily, she quickly explains that she’s talking about her own inner penis. What a relief.

I think we’re supposed to be together for fifty minutes. When it gets to one, I start to wonder if this is going to be a Ken Dodd style experience. She certainly still has at least four hours left in her. She has reserved a 160-seat room but there are only nine people seated in it. It does not matter. She will surely book it again next year. His mind is far too big for a converted broom closet.

Late flowering is a one woman show but wow, what a woman. I don’t know if there’s any point in all of this other than falling in love with the auburn-haired bella signorina. But that’s enough. “I’m just a used Ford Fiesta,” she shouts. “No Anna”, I want to shout back. “You are a Ferrari.”

Visit the show’s website

Anna Vanosi’s soulful voice transports you from jazz (Billie Holiday, Doris Day) to pop (Bob Dylan, Björk) tracing a comic, poignant, offbeat path. Maybe she’s not alone? Join this inspiring late-blooming adventure. “A beautiful melody of optimism and acceptance… eloquently poetic monologues and fantastic musical numbers” (The Student). “We run the emotional track, clinging to every word and song, and what a voice to savor: beautifully crafted entertainment” (International Times). “Someone who can tell a story and sing with courage and enthusiasm” (TheWriteAngleFV.blogspot.com).


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Grace D. Erickson