St David's Players
at the Barnfield Theatre- Exeter, 9th - 13th October 2012
St David's Players is an Exeter based society specialising in the works of Gilbert and Sullivan. Established in 1969, they have performed all of these extant operatic collaborations at least once and have developed a superb reputation locally for their productions.
'Princess Ida' was written against the backdrop of women's struggles to be recognised as full university students and emerged at the time of the founding of such places as Girton College Cambridge and Westfield College in London. In the show, Ida founds a women's university at Castle Adamant, in which two of the three Acts are set and from which men are barred on pain of death.
This production is set 'in Cambridge' in the Victorian era and opens with the day for which Prince Hilarion has been waiting for twenty years. He is about to meet the girl to whom he was betrothed as a baby. However, since she has forsworn men and is shut away in her place of learning, in his attempt to woo her, Hilarion and his friends dress up as women and sneak into the castle........
This show is a treat for all lovers of musical theatre, and this production of 'Princess Ida' is a feast for the eyes and the ears. The show has appeal as much to the 'newcomer' as to the 'seasoned follower of G&S' and the combination of a wide variety of musical styles, drama and humour means that it is appropriate for all ages.
There is a battle, an heroic rescue, street entertainment and a lesson in science. There are soldiers, kings, maidens, undergraduates.....and possibly even a monkey!
The choreography draws on dance in many forms - Scottish, Irish, Cossack, Classical Ballet, English Country dancing and more. There are also tiny snippets of things which people might recognise - such as moments in 'Pride and Prejudice', 'Swan Lake', the Olympics and various advertisements.
Through this production, St David's Players are supporting the work of the League of Friends of Mardon Neuro-Rehabilitation Centre - a purpose built centre in Exeter providing a range of in-patient services and facilities for individuals with neurological conditions (including extensive post-accident care) and support for their families. A donation of £1 per ticket on the charity evening (Wednesday 10th) and raffle and bucket collections at each performance provide the main element of this support.
'Princess Ida' is not very frequently performed, but is an example of Gilbert and Sullivan's musical talent and humour at their best; so don't miss the chance to see this hugely entertaining show, to find out what happens to Ida and Hilarion and through us to support the Mardon Neuro-Rehabilitation Centre.
Tickets are on sale now and can be purchased from the Barnfield Theatre Box Office (01392 270891) and at the Exeter Tourist Information Centre (01392 665700)
Performances Tuesday 9th - Saturday 13th nightly at 7:30pm
Matinée on Saturday 13th at 2:30 pm.
Ticket prices: £12 on Tuesday 9th, £14 other evenings, £10 concessions,
Matinée - all tickets £10
We look forward to meeting you at the Barnfield Theatre in October
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