Review: The Magic of Gilbert & Sullivan by Aireborough Gilbert & Sullivan

THIS production by Aireborough Gilbert & Sullivan Society explores the mystical elements present in two of the savoy operas, Iolanthe (fairies) and Ruddigore (ghosts).

Central to Iolanthe are the Peers and Fairies whilst Ruddigore concerns the Murgatroyd family. The clever link is achieved by having one of the Murgatroyd ancestors holding the position of Lord Chancellor. The action is set at Redherring Hall, the ancestral home of the Murgatroyds, a member of the family acting as guide and narrator.

The idea for this production came from Heather Field who makes her debut as producer. The theme is well developed and the use of simple but effective scenery allows each opera to have an appropriate setting.

The music is under the guidance of Georgia Webb, also making her debut with the society. Her enthusiastic and crisp style of conducting keeps the music well under control.

Over the years the society has gained a well deserved reputation for the quality of its chorus singing. This is fully maintained this year for which credit goes to Martin Campey as chorus master.

This society is able to draw upon a wealth of talent and experience which is evident in the strong line up of principals who move seamlessly between their roles in the two operas.

The show is advertised as a gallop through the operas. However all the well known and popular choruses and songs are there, so if you have a favourite, you are likely to hear it. This show is well worth seeing as an innovative approach to maintaining the G & S tradition.

The show, at Yeadon Town Hall, runs from Thursday, February 6th to Saturday, February 8th, with performances at 7.30pm on Thursday and Friday and 2.30pm on Saturday. Tickets are available online at or by phone 0333 666 3366 or on the door.

by Lionel Goodenough