The Gazette & Herald follows our progress...
(The text is generally too faded to reproduce in original form)

                             "IOLANTHE" IS THE CHOICE
Marton St Paul's Choral and Operatic Society is busy rehearsing for this year's production of Gilbert and Sullivan's opera, "Iolanthe".
  It is to be staged at the parochial hall, Preston Old-road, in the week beginning Nov. 28.
  Mr. Lelie Whitaker, musical director, and Mr Sidney King, the producer, are anticipating a show of a very high standard.
  Mr. King's return to the society has been warmly welcomed after his illness.
  A newcomer, Mr T. Hargreaves, of Great Eccleston, is preparing scenery and sets, and new members are taking a lively interest in the preparations.
  The society, the hon. secretary, Miss Parker, points out, is working for the church dayschools in the parish.
  The donation last year was 75, and it is hoped to exceed this in 1949, even though there has been a considerable increase in expenses.

An initial review after the Monday opening night is headed "A Marton triumph" and says "This talented company knows how to exploit to the full the gaiety, wit and melody of the Gilbert and Sullivan operas" before listing all the participants and noting finally that the orchestra was led by "Madam W. Gaggs".
Then follows a full report on the last day of the run...

I found a great deal to admire in their performance, writes "Musica", and the professional touch of Sidney King, the producer, was always apparent.
  The musical direction of Leslie Whitaker, too was outstanding, but the work of the orchestra (led by Mrs. Woof Gaggs) was at times unequal.
  A chorus which achieved a real balance and some expressive work, evidently revelled in the score and gave us some delightful moments.
  There were some sparkling characterisations in a well-chosen cast, whose diction, generally, was a feature.
  William Moister was a genial Chancellor - he extracted all the humour of his part without exaggeration.
  Arthur O.C. Sharp employed one of the best voices in the cast as Mountararat.   His song "When Britain really Ruled the Waves" was notable in its way, and William Tillotson also displayed complete understanding as Tolloller.   Their trio, when supported by the Chancellor, had great point.
  The Stephon of Kenneth Nicholls was another fine portrayal, and Eric W. Potterton, as Pte. Willis, was well in character.
  Peggy Cardwell was a popular Fairy Queen in the tradition of D'Oyly Carte.   The gay fairy song was well sung.
  Artistry and impeccable diction gave point to Mona Etherington's Iolanthe, and the fairy aunts - Joan Wilkin, Jean Wade and Isabel Nicholls - gave good support.
  Gladys Metcalfe, as Phyllis, was another admirable conception.
  Large audiences have appreciated the fact that there was never a dull moment.
  Mrs D. Dickenson does good work at the piano, and the secretarial duties were in the capable of hands of Miss K.C. Parker, of Thornton.

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