Trio of Comic Operas – Arcola Theatre

Arcola Theatre

26.27.28 August

Barber. Reynolds. Offenbach 

BOOK HERE

Irrational Theatre presents
A Hand of Bridge / The Sands of Time / Le 66
Three comic operas by Samuel Barber, Peter Reynolds and Jacques Offenbach
Director Paula Chitty
Music Director Peter Jones

Irrational Theatre return to Grimeborn to present a winning trio of comic opera gems. See all three in one joyous evening.
A HAND OF BRIDGE

Music by Samuel Barber
Libretto by Gian Carlo Menotti
Two married couples play a game of bridge, during which their innermost desires are hilariously revealed.
Sung in English without surtitles.

THE SANDS OF TIME
Music by Peter Reynolds
Libretto by Simon Rees
Receiving the Guinness World Record for World’s Shortest Opera when it was composed in 1933, this 3.5-minute score follows married couple Stan and Flo, whose luck changes during the boiling of their breakfast egg.
Sung in English without surtitles.

LE 66
Music by Jacques Offenbach
Libretto by Matthew Toogood and Ellen Leather, after Laurencin
When Frantz wins 100,000 florins in a lottery he discovers that good fortune can be a blessing in disguise in Jacques Offenbach’s fun, tuneful tale, with a new English libretto.
Sung in English without surtitles.
Praise for Irrational Theatre's previous work:

★★★★ “I’m really glad that Irrational Theatre decided to put on this triptych of rare comic operas, each is so different and funny with a trio of talented performers, wonderful production design and a lovely atmosphere, well worth seeing ” – The Stuart Review
★★★★ “As I left the theatre I felt like yodelling along with the score, and I’ve not said that since I saw Frank Ifield live in 1984” – Pub Theatres
“Who said opera had to be stuffy, dense and obtuse? Irrational Theatre presented not one but three miniature one act operas full of frivolity, each as absurd as the last… its whimsy was infectious. ” – The Gizzle Review

Cast: Joao Valido Vaz, Alex Hall,Sophie Horrocks,Ellie Popham.
MD Perter Jones . Pianist Laurie O'Brien,
Stage Management Kate Reyolds.
Director/Designer Paula Chitty.
Lighting Bob Grover.
Irrational Theatre’s productions are directed and designed by Paula Chitty- bringing you fascinating productions of entertaining plays and opera

 

Agatha Christie/David Hendon-Chapel Playhouse

Agatha Christie's The Rats

David Hendon's Home Time

30th June 7.30Pm 

Chapel Playhouse - BOOK HERE


Agatha Christie Christie’s dark and chilling play, The Rats
A treat for those who love Agatha Christie – one of her perplexing shorter plays in all its intrigue and deceit. ‘Miss Christie bring to the horror piece The Rats a highly ingenious plot,’ said The Stage.
The Rats Copyright © 1961 Agatha Christie Limited. All rights reserved.
AGATHA CHRISTIE is a registered trademark of Agatha Christie Limited in the UK and elsewhere. All rights reserved.

Home Time by David Hendon, a meditation on motherhood. A finalist at The Kenneth Branagh Award, hailed a triumph. ‘The evenings most horrific story comes with an emotional punch’ **** Younger Theatre.’ A tale of love and loss and all that comes with it’. ****Review Hub. ‘This moving meditation has much to offer ****Theatre Box

Cast: Elizabeth George.

Director and Designer - Paula Chitty
Lighting Bob Grover
Sound operation , Paula Chitty

CHAPEL PLAYHOUSE
http://www.chapelplayhouse.co.uk/whats-on.html
Sunday 30th June 7.30pm
Irrational Theatre’s productions are directed and designed by St Albans-based Paula Chitty with a mix of local and London cast to bring you fascinating productions of entertaining plays and opera.

Agatha Christie /Peter Hale- Chapel Playhouse

Agatha Christie’s  The Rats

Peter Hale’s A Small Step for England!

29th June 7.30 pm 

Chapel Playhouse - BOOK HERE

 

Agatha Christie Christie’s dark and chilling play, The Rats
A treat for those who love Agatha Christie – one of her perplexing shorter plays in all its intrigue and deceit. ‘Miss Christie bring to the horror piece The Rats a highly ingenious plot,’ said The Stage.

The Rats Copyright © 1961 Agatha Christie Limited. All rights reserved.
AGATHA CHRISTIE is a registered trademark of Agatha Christie Limited in the UK and elsewhere. All rights reserved.

Peter Hale’s satire, A Small Step for England!
A bit of light relief – yes, England still has something to give the world. In or out, we can still shake it all about.

Cast: Emily O'Mahony / Michael McGarry / Peter Hale/ Anne Murray,

Director and Designer - Paula Chitty

Lighting Bob Grover

Sound, Paula Chitty

ABBEY THEATRE - ST ALBANS - www.abbeytheatre.org.uk
https://www.abbeytheatre.org.uk/whats-on/the-rats-a-small-step-for-england/
Wednesday 24 April, 8.00pm
Friday 26 April, 8.00pm
Saturday 27 April, 8.00pm

KINGS HEAD THEATRE - www.kingsheadtheatre.com
https://system.spektrix.com/kingsheadtheatre/website/eventdetails.aspx?WebEventId=agathachristie
Saturday 18th May 3 pm

CHAPEL PLAYHOUSE - ON SALE SOON
http://www.chapelplayhouse.co.uk/whats-on.html
Saturday 29th and Sunday 30th June 7.30pm

Irrational Theatre’s productions are directed and designed by St Albans-based Paula Chitty with a mix of local and London cast to bring you fascinating productions of entertaining plays and opera.

Lily and Bear

Lily and Bear

Abbey Theatre. St Albans.

30th May 11.30/ 2.30 

Book here

The perfect pre Christmas treat.

Once in a while, along comes the perfect picture book, bearing the hallmarks of a true classic. Lisa Stubbs’ Lily and Bear is one such book, now adapted for the stage with songs with animation and puppets tells a truly magical tale about the give and take of friendship. Lily likes nothing better than to imagine and draw the things she loves. She draws cats and birds, boats and houses, and one day she draws a bear who comes to life. Lily and Bear play pirates, sing, and partake in all manner of bear activities, discovering the joys of sharing along the way.

‘The magical power of invention is at the centre of this warm-hearted story celebrating friendship and sharing’ - Guardian Book Review

CAST
Lily - Catrin Lewis/ Emily Yarrow
Bear - Alejandro Lopez-Montoya / Ross Hobson
Puppet operation and narration - Katy Bingham-Best

Based on the book by Lisa Stubbs
Published by Boxer Books
Adapted for the stage by Paula Chitty
Direction and production design by Paula Chitty
Music by Jill Priest
Arranged by David Forbes
Animation by Matt Sandbrook
Audiovisual operation by John Anderson
Produced by Lily and Bear Productions

Agatha Christie/Peter Hale-Kings Head Theatre

Agatha Christie’s The Rats
Peter Hale’s A Small Step for England!

18th May - 3 pm 

Kings Head Theatre

Agatha Christie Christie’s dark and chilling play, The Rats
A treat for those who love Agatha Christie – one of her perplexing shorter plays in all its intrigue and deceit. ‘Miss Christie bring to the horror piece The Rats a highly ingenious plot,’ said The Stage.

The Rats Copyright © 1961 Agatha Christie Limited. All rights reserved.
AGATHA CHRISTIE is a registered trademark of Agatha Christie Limited in the UK and elsewhere. All rights reserved.

Peter Hale’s satire, A Small Step for England!
A bit of light relief – yes, England still has something to give the world. In or out, we can still shake it all about.

Cast: Emily O'Mahony / Michael McGarry / Peter Hale/ Anne Murray,

Director and Designer - Paula Chitty

Lighting Bob Grover

Sound operation, Paula Chitty

ABBEY THEATRE - ST ALBANS - www.abbeytheatre.org.uk
https://www.abbeytheatre.org.uk/whats-on/the-rats-a-small-step-for-england/
Wednesday 24 April, 8.00pm
Friday 26 April, 8.00pm
Saturday 27 April, 8.00pm

KINGS HEAD THEATRE - www.kingsheadtheatre.com
https://system.spektrix.com/kingsheadtheatre/website/eventdetails.aspx?WebEventId=agathachristie
Saturday 18th May 3 pm

CHAPEL PLAYHOUSE

Saturday 29th

http://www.chapelplayhouse.co.uk/whats-on.html#event=30123482

and Sunday 30th June 7.30pm
http://www.chapelplayhouse.co.uk/whats-on.html#event=30123508

Irrational Theatre’s productions are directed and designed by St Albans-based Paula Chitty with a mix of local and London cast to bring you fascinating productions of entertaining plays and opera.

Rudigore – Gilbert and Sullivan stage design

Gilbert and Sullivan's Rudigore

Stage Design Paula Chitty

Produced by SACO

13-16th March - Abbey Theatre 

Another sparkling production from St Albans Chamber Opera.

The chorus and orchestra is conducted by David Ireson, and direction is by Peter Kestner. Stage Design Paula Chitty

This Gothic melodrama with witches, ghosts and disguises boasts some of Sullivan’s best music and a funny and poignant libretto from Gilbert. It’s strongly cast by SACO with some well-known and popular singers from their previous sell-out productions.

SACO’s popular Gala Night is on Wednesday’s opening night and includes free drinks and canapés.

Dates and times

Wednesday 13 March, 7.30pm
Thursday 14 March, 7.30pm
Friday 15 March, 7.30pm
Saturday 16 March, 2.30pm
Saturday 16 March, 7.30pm

Credits & acknowledgements

By:
Gilbert & Sullivan
On the:
Main Stage
Produced by:
St Albans Chamber Opera

Leoncavallo’s Pagliacci – Southwark Playhouse and Harpenden

The Southwark Playhouse 

Sunday 3rd February 7 pm  Book here

Harpenden Park Hall

Sunday 10th February 7 pm Book here

4 stars - Broadway World . Well Sung - This is about as accessible as the art form gets and, it has to be said, only opera's reputation for being dicult, demanding or posh stands in the way of anyone wishing to dip a toe in and try the temperature.

Creative Team
Director & Designer
Paula Chitty

Musical Director
Peter Jones
Pianist
Gergely Kaposi
Lighting
Bob Grover

Production/Stage Manager/ title operation
Kate Reynolds
Cast

Katy Bingham Best
Jenna Clemence
Samantha Green
Phyllida Jones
Alejandro Montanya Lopez
Randy Nichol
Joao Valido Vaz
Adrienne Walters

 

 

 

Lily and Bear at The Bunker

20th / 21st Dec 2018

11.30 and 2 pm.

The Bunker Theatre .London

BOOK HERE

The perfect pre Christmas treat.

Once in a while, along comes the perfect picture book, bearing the hallmarks of a true classic. Lisa Stubbs’ Lily and Bear is one such book, now adapted for the stage with songs with animation and puppets tells a truly magical tale about the give and take of friendship. Lily likes nothing better than to imagine and draw the things she loves. She draws cats and birds, boats and houses, and one day she draws a bear who comes to life. Lily and Bear play pirates, sing, and partake in all manner of bear activities, discovering the joys of sharing along the way.

‘The magical power of invention is at the centre of this warm-hearted story celebrating friendship and sharing’ - Guardian Book Review

CAST
Lily - Catrin Lewis
Bear - Alejandro Lopez-Montoya / Ross Hobson
Puppet operation and narration - Katy Bingham-BestBased on the book by Lisa Stubbs
Published by Boxer Books
Adapted for the stage by Paula Chitty
Direction and production design by Paula Chitty
Music by Jill Priest
Arranged by David Forbes
Animation by Matt Sandbrook
Audiovisual operation by John Anderson
Produced by Lily and Bear Productions

Winner – Kenneth Branagh Award – Waiting for Hamlet

4TH - 6TH October. 8 pm (sat at 7.30)

Waiting for Hamlet by David Visick

Directed by Paula Chitty

Cast: Elizabeth George/ Edmund Dehn

The old Court Theatre. St Leonards Road. Windsor. AL4 3BL

Waiting for Hamlet by David Visick

Directed by Paula Chitty

Cast: Elizabeth George/ Edmund Dehn

WINNER OF THE 2019 AWARD.

Lost in a wilderness with only an old fool for company . an exiled king plots to regain his kingdom - there's only one problem. He's dead.

Full details here:

http://www.windsorfringe.co.uk/drama-writing-awards-2018.html

Leoncavallo’s Pagliacci Kings Head Theatre

**** 4 Stars Broadwayworld

Directed /designed by Paula Chitty

Kings Head Theatre 14th October

www.kingsheadtheatre.com

Leoncavallo's Pagliacci

**** 4 Stars Broadwayworld

Directed /designed by Paula Chitty

Previously performed at The Arcola Grimeborn Festival, London 30th August - 3rd September 2016

PAGLIACCI, Arcola Theatre, 31 August 2016 by Gary Naylor Sep. 1, 2016 Broadway and West End:

BWW Review: The second opera in Irrational Theatre's double bill is the love triangle (plus one) of Pagliacci, the tale of the clown whose sexpot wife, Nedda, has turned too many heads in the travelling troupe. With echoes of Hamlet's play within a play, the evening's Commedia dell'arte show veers so close to real life, that Pagliaccio/Canio takes off his mask, takes matters into his own hands and tragedy on stage becomes tragedy in real life. Again, there's just David Podd on piano for the music, but he has a chorus to work with this time and singers who appear more relaxed in letting their voices dip and soar, filling the air, thrilling us in a way unique to boutique operas, so close are we to the performers. I've seen upwards of 25 such productions now and the impact of classically trained singers working (at times) within touching distance remains undiminished. Samantha Green's Nedda appears oblivious to her fate, transfixed by her lover, Silvio (a dashing Herbie Hill-Reid), and blind to the scheming of Tonia (Katy Bingham-Best in a gender flipped role), whose infatuation is met with a fatal disdain. A menacing, muscular Randy Nichol delivers his setpiece "Vesti la giubba", as he prepares to play his part in events anchored in both fiction and reality, with some skill, but I missed the strings and this most powerful of arias felt undercooked as a result. …in Italian (supported by very clear surtitles) this is about as accessible as the art form gets and, it has to be said, only opera's reputation for being dicult, demanding or posh stands in the way of anyone wishing to dip a toe in and try the temperature. At £20, it's fantastic value and an introduction to a world that can give anyone who enjoys theatre many years of entertainment. Pop along and see if you don't agree.

Original Cast for Grimeborn 2016/Cast for Kings Head 2018

Randy Nichol / Randy Nichol - Canio

Katy Bingham Best - Katy Bingham Best - Tonia

Pete Martin /Joao Valido Vaz- Peppe

Herbie Hill Reid/Alejandro Montanya Lopez - Silvio

Samantha Green/Samantha Green- Nedda

MD Peter Jones.

Pianists David Podd/ Nia Williams/ Gergely Kaposi

Lighting Bob Grover

Production/Stage Manager Kate Reynolds

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