Feast of G and S is heading your way as festival returns

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The National Gilbert & Sullivan Opera Company will open its 2018 season in Buxton Opera House on Tuesday, July 31, and start the celebrations rolling for the International Gilbert & Sullivan Festival’s 25th Anniversary, just where it all began in 1994.

Theatregoers have a fantastic week of Gilbert & Sullivan treats in store in one of the most stunning theatres in the country including a production of the rarely performed Haddon Hall on Thursday, August 2.

Celebrations commence on Monday, July 30, with an Anniversary Dinner and Concert in the Pavilion Arts Centre, Buxton. Lots of old faces from the early days of the Gilbert & Sullivan Festival will be there to reminisce about those memorable “good old days”.

The National Gilbert & Sullivan Opera Company open their 2018 season in Buxton Opera House on July 31 with a brand-new production of The Pirates of Penzance directed by the inimitable Richard Gauntlett. Watch out for a hilarious production as Richard also takes to the stage as the dotty Major General with his troupe of beautiful daughters.

A dramatic and updated Ruddigore (matinee and evening performances) follows on August 2. Directed by Vivien Coates who brought numerous award winning productions to Buxton Opera House and had the “hit” show of the festival last year with his five-star acclaimed production of Princess Ida.

Friday, August 3 sees the very last performance of the popular, local amateur society Derby G&S Company with a production of The Mikado directed by company founder Andrew Nicklin.

This will be a sad farewell for one of the festival’s favourite performing groups who scooped so many awards at the Gilbert & Sullivan Festival and the Waterford Festival in Ireland.

Said Festival founder Ian Smith: “It is the end of an era! We are so disappointed that Derby G&S will be hanging up their costumes for the very last time and we are looking forward to a bumper audience to really see them out in style. Derby have made such a fantastic contribution to Gilbert & Sullivan and really raised the bar at the festival. Their performances have always been first rate and innovative. They will certainly be missed!”

On Saturday, August 4, visitors can see a double bill of Trial By Jury directed by Ian Smith and a brand-new production of The Sorcerer (matinee and evening) directed by John Savournin. This is an excellent opportunity to see two charming productions rarely performed professionally.

And if visitors missed Ruddigore and The Pirates of Penzance earlier in the week there is another opportunity to see them again on Sunday, August 5.

Tickets can be booked at Buxton Opera House box office on 01298 72190 or online at www.buxtonoperahouse.org.uk