The Marton Parish Church
Choral and Operatic Society are presenting the third of their Gilbert
and Sullivan cycle of operas, "The Yeomen of the Guard,"
in the Parochial Hall at Marton.
They have the benefit
of Mr Sidney King, of St. Annes, an old member of the D'Oyly Carte
Opera Co., as producer and, making allowances for the usual first-night
"nerves," this difficult opera had a great deal of colour
about it, both musically and as a spectacle.
is collectively, rather than individually, that these enterprising
amateurs are most pleasing. There are no unusual voices,
just adequate ones; no dominating personalities, only engaging ones;
no ravishing beauties, just fresh and comely English faces in comely
period dress; no star comedians, only two folk trying their level
best - and often succeeding - in these Gilbertian drolleries.
A company, in short, preserving the lette and much of
the spirit of the traditional Gilbert and Sullivan operas.
Gracious and entirely personable is the Elsie Maynard
of Jennifer North who, of course, has had a great deal of experience
with the D'Oyly Carte Co. She sings charmingly and naturally
and with the proper weight and quality as, does Ruby Hill, as a
winsome and altogether sweet Phoebe Meryll.
piquant "Were I they Bride" was one of the best numbers
of the evening.
The unprepossessing Shadbolt was
cleverly portrayed by James V. Partridge, who was grimly miserable
in a comic way throughout.
Jack Spencer, too, was
excellent in Fairfax. He was quite cultured vocally,
and the beautiful "Is Life a Boon" - a song on a very
high plane - was most artistic. So, too, was "Free
from his Fetters."
The Jack Point of Arthur
D. S. Walls had much to commend it. Fowler Wade was
a success as Sergeant Meryll, as were William Tillotson (Leonard
Meryll) and John Woolfall (Sir Richard).
Carruthers of Miss Peggy Cardwell was a studied presentation, and
she sang her graphic song of the Tower splendidly, and she had the
support of a good foil in Mrs. L. Calvert, who impersonated her
Minor parts were well sustained by Messrs
John Gibson, Fred Moulding, Harold Holden, John Wade, Wilfred Ellis,
and Wilfred Hollows.
Mr W. Hogarth, the musical
director, handled a diversified and elaborate score with decision,
and Miss R. Nelson accomplished wonders at the piano, as she has
done, by the way, throughout rehearsals, with a willing assistant
in Miss E. Whitehead.
work was excellent, though insufficient contralto tone upset the
balance now and then.
The picturesque Tower warders
sang their opening chorus of pride and bravery most expressively.