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By Gilbert and Sullivan

Opera North

The Lowry, 15 November 2011

Opera North - Ruddigore

It is terrific fun, this production.

Arthur Sullivan’s gorgeous melodies are one pleasure, William Schwenck Gilbert’s wittily subversive lyrics are another.  The performances are tip-top, and of these I’d pick out Richard Burkhard as the bad, bad baronet (no one can swish a cape as he can) and Heather Shipp as the deliriously Mad Margaret.  Perhaps it is just my imaginings, but as a couple they seem to enjoy one of those relationships that require a safe word (‘Basingstoke’ seems to be theirs) in order for them to work smoothly.

At times, the lyrics have been updated and made topical, something that Opera della Luna have done with several of their recent Gilbert and Sullivan productions too.  I approve heartily, or at any rate am unconcerned, though purists may object.  As always with Opera North, the sets and lighting are simply stunning.

Ruddigore is at The Lowry again tomorrow, details are here.