Fairy, fairy funny folk
One of the four most popular works by Gilbert and Sullivan, Iolanthe shows the Victorian light opera duo at the height of their creative powers.
Audiences have the chance to appreciate their droll wit and the appealing music of the piece when the Wellington Gilbert & Sullivan Light Opera production has two performances in the Regent on Broadway on Saturday.
The company’s Stuart Gordon said along with poking the borax at the failings of politicians and guardians of the law, a few of the lines have been seasoned with topical New Zealand references.
The story revolves around a pair of young lovers, Strephon and Phyllis.
Thanks to fairy folk, Strephon enters Parliament with extraordinary powers. Legal technicalities are used to extricate everyone from the plot’s compromising situations and contradictions.
‘‘ Iolanthe has extraordinarily good music, but a silly story built upon 19th century values and topics,’’ said director John Goddard.
The fully staged and elaborately costumed work has a cast of 32 singers and dancers and a 24-piece orchestra.
Strephon is played by baritone Andrew Mankowski, newly arrived in New Zealand from Warsaw, where he was a solo singer and dancer for the Polish national ensemble, Mazowsze.
Bookings for the 2pm matinee and 7.30pm show are through Ticket Direct.
Andrew Mankowski and Karishma Thanawala as Strephon and Phyllis in ‘Iolanthe’.