By Gilbert and Sullivan
In 2011 Illyria raised the bar for the major UK open-air touring theatre companies by becoming the first and only one to add Operetta to its regular season.
In the town of Titipu flirting has been made illegal. The penalty, by order of The Mikado, is death. Too bad then that the main culprit is the Lord High Executioner Ko-Ko, who wishes to marry his beautiful young ward Yum-Yum, and who has no intention of executing himself. Can the itinerant musician Nanki-Poo be persuaded to be executed in his place? Can Pooh-Bah, the man who occupies every role in public office, be persuaded to take advantage of his influential access to himself as Archbishop to bend his own ear as Lord Chief Justice? And what would happen if anyone should dare to tell the Mikado that an execution had taken place when in fact it hadn’t…?
Gilbert & Sullivan’s wry comic opera is set in Japan, but its satire of the ways a lie can be twisted into a truth is more blisteringly relevant to the political landscape of the English-speaking world than perhaps ever before! Performed by a cast of 6 actor/singers accompanied by a musical director on keyboards, it gets the complete Illyria treatment, and is produced on a stage boasting a strikingly large (and authentic) Japanese torii gate. Despite the reduction in scale not a single word from WS Gilbert's libretto is cut, nor a single note or harmony from Sir Arthur Sullivan's score unsung.
Following the company’s runaway successes with HMS Pinafore, The Pirates of Penzance, Iolanthe and Ruddigore Illyria returns with yet another romantic summer opera to leave you with a great big silly smile on your face and a song in your heart.
Recommended for adults and children aged 5+
Running time: 2 hours including 20 minute interval