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Visit to Halifax July 2012

On our way through Halifax we called in at what must be the most famous building in the current world of G&S - The Old Rectory in All Souls Road - the offices of Ian and Neil Smith.  There we met up again with Ian and had a short chat - he was busy finalising the programmes for the 2012 Festival ready for the printers.  We then moved up to the church where the memorial plaque for John Reed is located.  Seems strange that there ws no mention of his career?

The unusual colour was due to the fact that it was partly in the shade and it was raining (as usual for this summer)

The house in which he lived is right next to the church;-



Sept 2010 - New Vic Theatre - Newcastle Staffs - The Mikado

We went to watch this excellent adaptation of the Mikado -  the setting was a modern day cricket match and we really enjoyed it. It was not for the purists who no doubt would find many faults but for a good night out it fitted the bill. Good updates to the little list and the Mikado's song. The three little maids were in hockey gear and quite aggressive.  Katisha first appeared in a hockey goal-keepers kit - she was very menacing. I liked the way the cast played instruments when they were not actually "on stage".

I was a little disappointed by what the poster outside the theatre had led me to believe - here the Mikado has full make-up on, but in reality he was impersonating Geoff Boycott.



August 2010 

17th International Gilbert & Sullivan Festival Champions

Second Runners Up

Trent Opera - Iolanthe

First Runners Up

Derby G&S Company - The Mikado

17th International Gilbert & Sullivan Festival Champions 2010

New Lyric, Belfast - The Pirates of Penzance

(sorry no photo)




(Added 1st September 2009)

New recording of Tom Jones released at Buxton

At a special meeting at Buxton a new recording of Tom Jones was released (although the distributors had sent the incorrect CDs so we had to wait for the real ones to be couriered up)  Although not Gilbert & Sullivan I have included this as many of our favourites from the Buxton Festivals were taking part in the recording


,  Richard Suart,  ,  David Russell Hulme,  , 


Rachel Harland                                  Donald Maxwell


Elizabeth Menezes                         Iestyn Morris.


Simon Butteriss

(Added 3rd January 2008)


A new CD has just been released of Thomas Round singing a recital of Irish songs. Although Thomas is best known for his G&S and operatic performances, he says he has always had a love of Irish songs. This recital was recorded many years ago in Thomas’s London home when he was principal tenor with the Sadler’s Wells Opera. His accompanist was Michael Moores, a rehearsal pianist with the company who went on to become a conductor but was tragically killed in a road accident in California some years later. Michael’s performances on these recordings are, in Thomas Round’s words, “quite brilliant”. 

The old reel-to-reel tape recording has been cleaned up and re-mastered for this CD by Gavin Mist who has worked closely with Thomas Round on the project. Although the recital runs for just thirty minutes, this is an important and unique CD issue as these recordings of some superb performances have never before been publicly available. 

There are twelve songs in the recital. The first, The Tipperary Christening by Dan Maguinness is one of Thomas Round’s favourite party pieces. Indeed, he first heard it sung at an after-show party in Dublin. Other favourites include Phil the Fluter’s Ball and The Star of the County Down. The disc also features Herbert Hughes’ hauntingly beautiful arrangement of She Moved Thro’ the Fair. Thomas Round recalls how he first heard this song: it was at another Dublin after-show party and one of the members of the company stood, with his arm resting on the mantelpiece of a fireplace, and sang the song unaccompanied. “I shall never forget that scene”, says Thomas. 

Thomas Round sings Irish Songs is available direct from Gavin Mist, PO Box 14, York YO30 6YY, UK. Email or telephone +44 (0) 1904 653193. It can also be purchased from The price is £7.99 plus postage & packing.

(Added 23rd May 2007)

Here’s a State of Things

New book  by Bernard Lockett to be published by Melrose Books in June 2007

(Details below supplied by publishers)

Here’s a State of Things is a historical novel which cleverly intertwines the lives of two sets of characters, a hundred years apart, but both absorbed by the works and times of Gilbert and Sullivan and the D’Oyly Carte Opera Company. Rupert Moore and his 94-year old Grandmother, Alice Harding, are on their way to attend the final performance in the 107-year existence of the D’Oyly Carte in February 1982. They are both dedicated enthusiasts and Rupert was fortunate enough to have secured tickets for the evening in a ballot. Alice fondly recalls her own family gatherings of the late Victorian era, around the piano at home – the music was always from Gilbert and Sullivan.

By contrast to the emotions of the approaching Last Night, the story goes back to the very start of it all in 1872 as seen through the eyes of Thomas Dobbs, a stagehand, and his seamstress wife, Nellie. They live within the grinding poverty of 19th century London’s Shoreditch area, a sharp contrast to the glamour and finery of the world of the theatre. When illness forces Nellie out of the “sweatshop” at the local dress factory, inspired by Tom’s enthusiasm for his work, she joins her husband in the theatre, utilising her skills backstage. What follows is a lovingly described chronicle of their lives as they become inextricably captivated by D’Oyly Carte and the works of Gilbert and Sullivan. There are many evocative references to theatre life of the times along with anecdotes about the writers, composers and the company, a successful story in contrast to the sad events of 1982 in London.

Lockett’s writing lovingly captures the mood of the 19th Century in addition to serving as a fitting tribute to the works of Gilbert and Sullivan and to the original D’Oyly Carte Opera Company.

(Added 11th February 2007)

Cynthia Morey has just published her latest book "A  WORLD  THAT'S  ALL  OUR  OWN"  

Her flier about the book gives the following details:-

'This story was written way back in 1984, when I was in 'Me and My Girl' at the Adelphi Theatre.  It began life as a play.  When sorting out some papers last year I discovered the manuscript, re-read it  and decided it might convert into a novel.  So here it is!  I think that anyone interested in Gilbert and Sullivan, or who has taken part in an amateur production will appreciate  it.'

Get your copy from Amazon, Eruditor, etc.

(Added 9th February 2007)

Godalming Operatic Society now have a new Website

(Added 7th November 2006)

There are now the full sets of both the "Extra-Large" and "Large" Gilbert & Sullivan cigarette card available as large scanned images on this site.  Both the fronts and backs have been scanned in.  Click onto the link below to be taken there directly.

(Added 2nd September 2006)

The long awaited biography of John Reed is now available

I expected them to be available at the Festival, as both John and Cynthia were present, but no such luck - so I have ordered mine from "The Book Depository" .

(Added 17th May 2006)

Eastbourne Gilbert & Sullivan Society have had a successful run with "The Gondoliers" - directed by Alistair Donkin

Click onto the photo above for more details.

(Added 30th November 2005)

Ruddigore - the cartoon version 

by Halas and Batchelor has been released on DVD

 good thing about this DVD is that it is voiced by many of our favourite 1967 D'Oyly Carte performers.

Robin Oakapple John Reed
Richard Dauntless David Palmer
Sir Despard Murgatroyd Kenneth Sandford
Old Adam George Cook
Rose Maybud Ann Hood
Mad Margaret Peggy Ann Jones
Dame Hannah Gillian Knight
Zorah Jennifer Toye
Sir Roderic Murgatroyd Donald Adams

The Ruddigore is heavily abridged!  But it is still a good buy!


The complete words of Gilbert & Sullivan operettas available in electronic format - click on Gilbert above to go to the site.

This is great for looking up references and words throughout the entire canon.

If you are interested in Gilbert & Sullivan then you really should be a member of the SavoyNet

For more details and instruction on how to join click on the picture, of Sullivan and Gilbert at the computer, above. 

There is also a list of SavoyNet Frequently Asked Questions here

(I will leave this window open in order that you can come back again)

This Page was last updated on Sunday, 22 July 2012