HMS Pinafore

Opera Della Luna

Grand Theatre, Wolverhampton

****

THERE'S a refreshing new style about Opera Della Luna's presentation of this Gilbert and Sullivan tale about the pretty daughter of a brave sea captain and her love for a common sailor.

A small company, yes, but they deliver a big performance with fine singing, smart acting and an ability to squeeze every drop of humour from the operetta.

The talented cast of eight - who manage to act as principals, crew and chorus - begin by building their ship during the overture....hoisting flags, ropes, rigging and sails, and the audience immediately feel at ease.

Graham Hoadly, for instance, manages to play Able Seaman Dick Deadeye and the stout Aunt of Sir Joseph Porter, First Lord of the Admiralty, with equal conviction.

Fiona Hammacott sings beautifully as Josephine, daughter of Captain Corcoran (Wyn Pencarreg), and Trevor Jary impresses in the role Ralph Rackstraw, the lowly 'Tar' she falls for despite the gulf in their social standing.

Super performances, too, from Louise Crane (Little Buttercup) and Philip Cox (Sir Joseph).

The six-strong band, led by director Jeff Clarke, performed on stage in this one-nighter.

Paul Marston 

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