The Yeoman Of The Guard Poster

Spring 2012

Performances:  March 13-19 - 2011

Performed at the Leeds Carriageworks Theatre.

About The Show

For inspiration and to get ourselves into the mood, some from the Society visited the Tower of London.   We were reminded that there are no “yeomen of the guard” based there (they are elsewhere);  there are “yeomen warders” at the Tower.    Gilbert was aware of the inaccuracy but he exercised his poetic licence and chose what he thought was the most impressive title for the piece.

The Yeomen of the Guard opened in 1888 at the Savoy Theatre.  Gilbert was worried that it was not sufficiently comic.   Sullivan thought that it was the best of his collaborations with Gilbert that he had composed and of those operettas it was the nearest thing to grand opera that he had written. Despite frayed tempers, constant rows, altercations and disagreements, strongly worded letters to and from librettist and composer,  arguments about rehearsals, revisions and cuts, it ran for 423 performances.

Our rehearsal process was significantly more friendly and calm.  Ok, Anita looked increasingly irate at how male chorus just could not stand in a straight line and raise their pikes in unison.  Her dreams of more expansive and tight marching choreography was soon shelved!  What made Anita much happier was hearing that Matthew Kitchen had been learning fire-eating for fun.  Perfect for the street-performer scene.

A final story to be mentioned is the scene where the all important key was conspicuously absent from the stage.  Richard apologises again to Lucy and John.

Cast

  • Celia – Sarah Case
  • Leila – Rebecca Barwick
  • Fleta – Emily Futers
  • Fairy Queen – Janet Johnston
  • Iolanthe – Lucy Brand
  • Strephon – Philip Case
  • Phyllis – Nicky Burrows
  • Earl Tolloller – John Tattersall
  • Earl Of Mountararat – Richard Pascoe
  • Lord Chancellor – Daryl Pickthall
  • Private Willis – David Parker

Ladies:  Sian Bates, Jacquie Battensby, Faith Church, Janet Clarke, Jennifer Drew, Jackie Dunderdale, Grace Farrell, Ann Futers, Di Ghirardi, Megan Henderson, Melody Horgan, Pat Kearney, Victoria Morrish, Victoria Parker, Amy Small, Andrea Smiles, Joy Suthern, Joan Tattersall, Rachel Whittaker, Emma Young.

Gentlemen:  Simon Bray, Bryan Butler, Mike Downey, John Finnigan, Will Gausden, Dave Harrison, John Haywood, Harry Heyworth, Matthew Kitchen, Christian Mannsaker, Matthew Oglesby, Peter Loveday, Tony Shaw, Matt Stirk

  • Director = Anita Adams;  Musical Director = Mike Williamson

Critical Response

Winner of Civic Guild Award for Best Musical