May 21 – May 26, 2002
Director: Max Rayner
Musical Director: John Drake
Choreographer: Max Rayner
Production Manager: John Turner
Stage Manager: Karl Mortimer
Set Designer: Timothy Ide
Lighting Designer: Laraine Wheeler
In May 2002 the Gilbert & Sullivan Society of SA went to the canals of Venice and an Isle in the Southern Sea as one of Gilbert & Sullivan's most popular operettas revisits Adelaide. Directed by Max Rayner, Musical Direction by John Drake.
The Duke of Plaza-Toro (a Grandee of Spain) – Barry Hill
Luiz (his attendant) – Joshua Hillary
Don Alhambra del Bolero (the Grand Inquisitor) – Timothy Ide
Marco Palmieri – Mark McKenna
Giuseppe Palmieri – Daniel Goodburn
Antonio – James Stevens
Francesco – Alister Brasted
Giorgio – Andrew Trestrail
The Duchess of Plaza-Toro – Norma Knight
Casilda (her daughter) – Marsha Seebohm
Gianetta – Prue Hompas
Tessa – Lisa Catinari
Fiametta – Melissa Hann
Vittoria – Laura White
Giulia – Carolyn Amos
Inez (The King’s Foster-Mother) – Di Griffiths
Susan Brooke-Smith, Peter Cannon, Christopher Davies, Heather Elliott, Gemma Gibson, Julie Goodburn, Di Griffiths, Alison Hansen, Susan Henderson, Peter Herriman, Elizabeth Michell, Sydney Moyle, Steve Parker, Doug Plaisted, Caroline Stanley-Smith, Ali Stubberfield, Brian Sudlow, Don Worley
GILBERT and Sullivan fans will be humming along with this colourfully dressed, very traditional presentation.
One of the most popular operettas in the G & S repertoire, the Venetian tale concerns young maidens, kings, secret loves and confused identities.
Gilbert’s libretto packs a satirical punch without being heavy handed or overtly silly, while Sullivan’s music is divine.
Musical director John Drake leads a superb orchestra while Max Rayner’s workmanlike stage direction and choreography hold the show together and throw in a few surprises – such as the doll dance which is an absolute hoot.
Prue Hompas, who plays Gianetta, and Joshua Hillary (the duke’s attendant Luiz) are in fine form, roping in the audience every time with their ever so sweet, never-miss-a-beat singing.
Mark McKenna and Daniel Goodburn are a quality double act as the gondolier brothers Marco and Giuseppe, and Barry Hill’s a hit as the dandy Duke of Plaza-Tora delivering his lines with an overstated oomph.
There were flat spots on opening night but one or two of the ensemble numbers with pace hit the right spot and brought energy to the show.
And if for no other reason, The Gondoliers is worth seeing for the frocks. They’re fabulous!
– Stephen House