Search

Classic opera brings comedy to east London for Valentine’s Day

13:00 15 February 2014

Gilbert and Sullivan

Gilbert and Sullivan's comic opera is perfect for Valentine's Day

Archant

One of the best loved operas of all time is getting a dramatic makeover this Valentine’s Day.

HMS PinaforeHMS Pinafore

Gilbert and Sullivan’s HMS Pinafore starts a run at the Hackney Empire on Friday and, breaking from tradition, it will feature a completely male cast.

Award-winning director Sasha Regan wanted to approach the play from a totally different angle.

She said: “You get a lot of very traditional performances of HMS Pinafore.

“With this one we are really true to the score. We wanted to bring it to life so that a new audience can enjoy Gilbert and Sullivan.”

According to Regan, using an all-male cast not only added to the comedy, but was also a testament to the talent of the actors who play convincing female roles.

“We are pushing them really hard vocally and physically; they are singing in falsettos,” she added.

The story takes place aboard HMS Pinafore and follows the captain’s daughter, Josephine, who is in love with a lower class sailor.

Exploring themes of equality and patriotism, the plot is also imbued with light-hearted comedy which has seen the opera rise to international fame.

Choreographer Lizzi Gee said: “A lot of the audience is shocked. Some of them don’t pay much attention and then they realise it’s an all-male performance.

“It is a talent. You don’t expect that a man can deliver a female role just as well, and when they all sing you come away not really believing what you have heard.

“It is like a wall of sound – pure opera.”

Regan says the play is perfect for Valentine’s Day and addresses themes that are relevant today. “It‘s so romantic,” she adds. “Even if you haven’t got anyone to go with, you should come along. It is absolutely feelgood for all ages.”

HMS Pinafore runs until February 23 and tickets cost between £10 and £32. Call 020 8985 2424 to book seats.

0 comments

Latest Entertainment Stories

Friday, November 21, 2014
Neil Young - Storytone

Young offers fans intimate solo and lavishly orchestrated versions of the same songs, with typically mixed results.

Thursday, November 20, 2014
Paddington

With Christmas comes a host of movies to the big screen, from festive family comedies to action blockbusters. Here is our pick of the best out next month.

Thursday, November 20, 2014
The Hidden House is set to scare and thrill visitors this Christmas  (Photo by Tim P. Whitby/Getty Images for Westfield Stratford City)

Something’s happened to Red Riding Hood, and you’re heading into the woods to find her. That’s the premise for the Hidden House, an immersive interactive experience at Westfield Stratford City.

Wednesday, November 19, 2014
Restless! Reckless! And Reviled! Untamed Youth, The Original Rebels Of Rock'N'Roll

Plenty of lesser-known nuggets and curios from the birth of rock’n’roll, scattered among the big hitters in a great-value set.

Most read entertainment

The final GP in the UAE may not have been a thriller, but it did kind of sum up the season for a lot of drivers.

Protesters have been warned they are banned from setting up camp at the landmark.

John Cantlie features in the new IS video, in which he talks about a recent failed military attack.

From Britain First’s Facebook posts, you would assume they’d won the Rochester by-election. They didn’t, but they’re claiming it anyway.

Digital Edition

Image
Read the Newham Recorder e-edition today E-edition