The Pirates of Penzance

Date 3rd April 2012
Society Linlithgow Amateur Musical Productions
Venue Linlithgow High School, Linlithgow
Type of Production Gilbert & Sullivan
Director Calum Campbell
Musical Director Eddie MacLennan


Author: Elizabeth Donald

Choreographer: Hayley Fleming

The Pirates of Penzance is an ambitious undertaking for young people. Even although this reviewer was there on the second night, it was clear that this group met the challenge of difficult language and music head on with a performance that charmed and entertained, giving the lie to those who say G & S is lost to the next generation. The production opened with a boat sailing on to the stage and brought the pirates straight to the audience - and even to the MD at one point! The idiosyncratic Pirate King was enacted by Ross Miller with enthusiasm and panache. Sandy Bain as Frederick sang his way comfortably through, engaging sympathy for his plight. He delivered a lovely duet ‘O False One’ with Ruth, Christina McCall, who played a sprightly Ruth. Megan Rough as Mabel sang beautifully in this testing role and was well supported by the other daughters, Kate, Edith and Isobel, namely Hannah Ritchie, Anna Johnston and Anna McEwan. Cameron Wright in the guise of The Major - General impressed as he dealt with tongue twisting ‘Model of a Modern Major General’, managing the humour with clear diction and fine control. The Sergeant of Police, Alexander Gavin, charmed with his confident singing and cheeky portrayal of the role while Heather Hilditch performed an efficient Samuel. Although some of the music pushed these young voices hard, the combined chorus of Pirates and Daughters swelled to an impressive series of songs at the end of Act 1, while in Act 2 the motley band of Policemen sang and acted their way into the audience’s hearts. All the youngsters were well drilled by Producer, MD and Choreographer but no amount of drilling could hide the talent and enthusiasm that was on stage. Congratulations to all.