Making your professional stage debut is a daunting task.

Fresh from drama school, Georgina Ambrey could have gone for a support role in Chekhov, Shakespeare or Wilde – say a couple of cute lines and make sure you don’t fall over.

But she’s taken on LV in The Rise And Fall of Little Voice – a character that veers from crushed butterfly to belting out Shirley Bassey songs in the click of a needle on an LP.

Traumatised by her father’s death, she spends all her time listening to his old records by Cilla, Garland, Piaf, Bassey, Holliday and more.

A human jukebox, she lives for them and by them, singing like her heroines to express herself.

Ambrey looks like a ghostly child in pyjamas for most of the play, but when it comes to performing a song, she grows a foot and actually seems to glow.

One particular scene is mesmerising. She flits from song to song, each by a different singer, to describe the torment she’s in. Blink and you miss at least two of the voices.

And her show at the club, shimmering in sequins, is pure sass, swagger and sleekness.

It would be too cliched, and too onerous on Ambrey to say “a star is born”, but on this showing, there are certainly prospects of a glittering career.

She is given stunning support.The play is powered by Emily Pithon as her potty-mouthed overbearing but neglectful mother Mari. It's a firework of a performance.

And Chris Porter is excellent as cheapskate agent and hopeless chancer Ray Say.

Eric Potts shows his comedy skills as nightclub owner Mr Boo, Asha Kingsley is quietly hilarious as drippy Sadie and Luke Murphy as nervy phone installer Billy is brilliantly low-key.

Director Zoë Waterman conjures perfect performances, while set and sound design are magical in a near-faultless show.

The Rise and Fall of Little Voice,Theatre by the Lake, Keswick., until November 1. For tickets call 017687 74411 or go to