Based on true stories, Rue Magique explores the complex relationship between Desdemona, a South London prostitute, and her 13-year-old daughter Sugar. They live in a world that exists beneath the radar of police and social services, where people struggle to survive by any means possible. But can there be any hope, any redemption at all, when a mother forces her own daughter into prostitution?
Rue Magique was originally conceived by composer and lyricist Kahr as a short musical piece inspired by the young people of a children’s charity, and was performed for the Prince of Wales in 1999. It has since been developed into a full two-act musical by Kahr and Lisa Forrell, who both wrote the book and directs the show.
LaBarrie stars as Desdemona. After appearing in the West End production of Mary Poppins as the oldest woman in the world, La Barrie went on to play Pearl in Boney M musical Daddy Cool at the Shaftesbury and, most recently, Madame Thénardier in Les Misérables at the Queen’s.
The rest of the cast comprises Nadia Di Mambro as Sugar, Terel Nugent as Rem, Gavin Ashbarry, Adam Bayjou, Julian Forsyth, Amanda Minihan, Amanda Posener and Anna Stolli.
Currently playing at the King’s Head is powerful drama Cherry Docs, which ends its run on 19 October.