Represented by Jean Diamond (Diamond Management)

and Donald Scrimgeour (Donald Scrimgeour Artists)

Want something designed? or directed?

Paula Chitty. Director /Designer/ Costumes / Producer.

pjchitty@gmail.com. 07792 595 595

 

OPERABASE

 

2019

OlD COURT THEATRE - - Director/Designer -  Ice Queen - KBAward Finalist PLAY 

ARCOLA THEATRE -  Director /Designer -TRIO OF OPERAS- AUG -OPERA

Barber's THE HAND OF BRIDGE

Reynolds' THE SANDS OF TIME

Offenbach's LE 66

HARPENDEN  - Director/Designer - TRIO OF OPERAS - AUGUST - OPERA

Barber's THE HAND OF BRIDGE

Reynolds' THE SANDS OF TIME

Offenbach's LE 66

CHAPEL PLAYHOUSE  - Director/Designer - Agatha Christie's THE RATS - JUNE - PLAY 

CHAPEL PLAYHOUSE - Director/Designer - David Hendon's HOME TIME - JUNE - PLAY 

CHAPEL PLAYHOUSE - Director/Designer - Agatha Christie’s  THE RATS - JUNE - PLAY

CHAPEL PLAYHOUSE - Director/Designer - Peter Hale’s A SMALL STEP FOR ENGLAND! - JUNE - PLAY

ABBEY THEATRE  - Director/Designer - Lily and Bear - MAY - MUSICAL

KINGS HEAD THEATRE  - Director/Designer - Agatha Christie’s THE RATS- MAY - PLAY

KINGS HEAD THEATRE  - Director/Designer  - Peter Hale’s A SMALL STEP FOR ENGLAND!- MAY -  PLAY

SACO - Designer - Gilbert and Sullivan's RUDIGORE- OPERA - MARCH - OPERA 

SOUTHWARK PLAYHOUSE -Director/Designer - LEONCAVALLO'S PAGLIACCI - FEB  - OPERA

HARPENDEN  - Director/Designer - LEONCAVALLO'S PAGLIACCI - FEB - OPERA

 

       

Ice Queen - Kenneth Branagh Award - Finalist - Windsor

All the plays had a well rehearsed. with highly competent cast , as well as excellent directors 

Paul Johnson - Sardines Magazine 

A Hand Of Bridge/The Sands of Time/Le 66 – Arcola, London

THE STAGE  ★★★★ by Edward Bhesania - 

This fast-paced, hour-long triple bill at the Grimeborn Festival brings together three pieces linked by the theme of chance.

Barber’s nine-minute A Hand of Bridge focuses on two couples gathered for their regular bridge night. Each player’s thoughts drift to their own concerns: Sally wants a peacock-feathered hat; her husband, Bill, wants his mistress; Geraldine reflects on loneliness; and her husband, David, reflects on his boss’ pay packet. As Geraldine, Ellie Popham’s lament on loneliness is especially poignant and vocally sophisticated.

The most distinguished feature of Peter Reynolds’ two-hander, Sands of Time, is that, at three minutes and 34 seconds, it holds the Guinness World Record for the shortest opera.

Stan and Flo argue over breakfast – an egg having been put on to boil at the start – and are interrupted by visitors who announce that the couple have won on the football pools. Though Sophie Horrocks and Alex Hall give snappy performances, replacing Reynolds’ piece with Morecambe and Wise’s Breakfast Sketch would have been funnier and more dramatic. The music would have been better too.

The title of Offenbach’s Le 66 refers to a winning lottery that down-at-heel Frantz has bought. It is only after returning from a spending spree that his fortunes are turned on their head: his ticket is actually 99. Horrocks and Joao Valido Vaz (as the itinerant-singer cousins Grittly and Frantz) are joined by Hall  for a witty revival of a rarity.

Horrocks and Valido Vaz  work seamlessly together, she wringing her face for every comic effect, he amping up the Eurotrash-y camp. Offenbach’s music is often pedestrian, but the cast’s optimism shines through.

Verdict
Four singers and one piano create an antidote to Wagnerian extravagance ★★★★
________________________________________________________________
 
The Reviews Hub 
Writer: Samuel Barber, Peter Reynolds and Jacques Offenbach

Director: Paula Chitty

Reviewer: Miriam Sallon

Owing to the fact that three operettas are performed within an hour, it seems unfair to ask that any of them pack a real punch- there just isn’t time. That being said, there is plenty of time for light entertainment and a little comedy. And with only a piano (Laurie O’Brien) to accompany, the focus is almost entirely on the singers themselves.

Samuel Barber’sA Hand Of Bridge tells of two couples playing a lacklustre game of Bridge as each of them in turn sings an arietta expressing their innermost thoughts. Sally (Sophie Horrocks) yearns for a peacock hat whilst her husband Bill (Joao Valido Vaz) lusts after his lover Cymbaline; David (Alex Hall) fantasizes about greater wealth and sexual liberation whilst his wife Geraldine (Ellie Popham) contemplates all of those who should but don’t love her (her husband included) and concludes in lamenting her distant relationship with her dying mother. Popham’s controlled soprano is surprisingly heart-breaking considering we have known her character all of two minutes.

Given that the stage is so small, director and designer Paula Chitty has cleverly incorporated costume and scenery changes in to the script. At the beginning of the next operetta, for example, Horrocks, playing house wife Flo, picks up the discarded cards scattered all over the floor as part of her house work. Hall’s costume change consists of him shedding his shirt and jacket to reveal an undervest. No need for the stage to remain empty for a moment, or for a short pause in the music; they simply saunter in to the next story.

Peter Reynold’s The Sands of Time won the plaudit of shortest opera on earth in the 1993 Guinness Book of Records. At only three minutes long, it lasts just as long as it takes Flo to boil an egg for her husband Stan (Hall). The couple find themselves in a heated domestic dispute over breakfast when the doorbell rings and they discover they have won a large sum of money and are conciliated. At three minutes, it would be hard to make any more of an impact, but on the other hand, it’s short enough that its ridiculousness is contained and the audience is entertained.

For the final operetta, Jacques Offenback’s Le 66, Horrocks rips off her velcroed gingham dress to reveal a garish red and green lederhosen-style outfit, and Valido Vaz, peeling off his prior costume, follows suit. Two cousins heading for Strasbourg to visit Grittly’s (Horrocks) ailing sister, they come across a wily salesman (Hall) who convinces them that Franz (Valido Vaz) has won the lottery, causing the cousins to reveal their true nature. The plot is completely ridiculous, which would be fine if it were as brief as the last, but Le 66 takes up the majority of the hour. There are a few moments of amusement, but it’s gentle comedy at best. Nevertheless, the cast’s talents are clear, each showing their vocal prowess, and giving as much as is possible from this very silly storyline.

Assuming Grimeborn is an attempt to make opera more accessible and bring in a younger crowd, they might have chosen more exciting material, on this occasion at least. The cast themselves show great talent in both their acting and singing; it only seems a shame they weren’t given more to work with.

Runs until 28 August 2019. | Image: Contributed

TWITTER 

Three comic pieces - cleverly stitched together . Another Grimeborn Triumph - Clay Harris@mudlarklives

In my love-hate relationship with Offenbach- this was a love one (Le 66) - Skate Art Guy@skateartguy

VERY NICE COMIC OPERA - LE 66 from 1856 about a lottery ticket. Humerous touch that the audience members were given a raffle tickets on arrival!

Good vehicle for jaunty strains of Offenbach - Joseph Healy@verde1957

 

2018 

BUNKER THEATRE - Director/Designer - Lily and Bear - DEC - MUSICAL 

KINGS HEAD THEATRE  - Director/Designer - Leoncavallo's Pagliacci  OCT - OPERA

KENNETH BRANAGH AWARD - Director - Waiting for Hamlet -Kenneth Branagh Award    OCT-PLAY - WINNER 

HERTFORDSHIRE - Director - Grimley's  Maltings Arts Theatre SEPT - PLAYS

BROCKLEY JACK LONDON   Gogol's Government Inspector new adaptation. AUGUST -PLAY

UPSTAIRS AT THE GATEHOUSE LONDON  Gogol's Government Inspector new adaptation. JULY -  PLAY

LETCHWORTH BROADWAY.  Director/Designer. Lily and BearJUNE -MUSICAL

ABBEY THEATRE . Designer. Die Fladermaus.      MARCH - OPERA

KINGS HEAD THEATRE . Director/Designer. A Triptych of Comic Operas   FEB  - OPERA

Peter Reynolds' The Sands of Time

 John Whittaker's The Proposal

Offenbach's  Le 66

ABBEY THEATRE. Director/Designer. A Triptych of Comic Operas.    FEB - NEW OPERA

    Peter Reynolds' The Sands of Time

 John Whittaker's The Proposal

Offenbach's  Le 66

       

  THE SPACE LONDON. LONDON  - Director -  Home Time      January . NEW WRITING

 

2018 – Triptych of Comic Operas- Kings Head Theatre . London

★★★★ Stuart Review - Modern operas with an irrational twist”

★★★★ Pub Theatres 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.

★★★ The Gizzler Review
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.
It may not have been the most refined or sophisticated evening of opera,
but its whimsy was infectious. Sometimes fun comes in small packages.

★★★ Reviewed by Anthony Evans. Planet Hugill
It is always a pleasure to see little known works, but you never know quite what you’re going to get. Irrational Theatre came to the King’s Head yesterday evening What it did have was bags of energy, complete with comedy accents, that made the silliness of this charming operette such fun. If they had been able to inject that energy into The Proposal it may have been more engaging

Home Time -  The Space, London 

★★★★Posted by: The Reviews Hub - London in Drama, London, Review 3 hours ago 0

Writers:  David Hendon,
Directors: Paula Chitty,  Cast: Elizabeth George

The evening’s most horrific story comes with an almighty emotional punch that carefully
sidesteps the sentimental as David Hendon explores the effect of a shock tragedy on a single
mother in Home Time. Waiting for her 7-year-old son to return, the mother, played with
affecting depth by Elizabeth George, begins to relay the story of her life and how she came to
be a parent. Hendon slowly builds the story, first by mining the frustrations of parenthood
and the backstory of this little family before walking the audience through the immediate and
galling aftermath of the tragedy. George is perhaps a little too calm as she narrates the effect
of those moments, but the overall effect of this little play is a powerful one.

★★★★A younger theatre

Home Time by David Hendon, which is directed by Paula Chitty. Elizabeth George plays the caring mother, telling stories of her young son’s first day of school and his questionable colour choices for his painting of a fire engine. What begins as a relatable piece on the pressures parents face when it comes to their child’s appearance, behaviour and even the standard of their birthday parties, slowly takes a dark turn. We are taken to many different locations during George’s time on stage, all which are simply but cleverly suggested through movement and lighting. Whilst her portrayal of Jenny has witty moments, often her energy and pitch remains on the same axis, becoming somewhat monotonous. That being said, the piece does take a shocking turn and becomes a tale of love, loss, and all that comes with it.

★★★★Theatrebox

Home Time, written by David Hendon and directed by Paula Chitty, is a harrowing piece about motherhood, shock and grief. Jennifer is a single mother with a young son, played with great feeling and sensitivity by Elizabeth George. She begins the piece sharing with us the many mundane joys, degradations and celebrations that motherhood entails. However, we soon realize that there’s something terrible she’s not telling us, and seeing her come to terms with this dreadful truth provides us with an honest and unflinching portrayal of shock and grief. Watching the piece, it feels like we spend a bit too much time with Jennifer before this event, and not quite enough time seeing her deal with the aftermath; an odd choice, considering the meat of the piece seems to come after the twist. However, despite a slightly meandering feel towards the beginning, this moving meditation on motherhood has much to offer for theatre-goers looking to have their heart-strings tugged.

 LAST UPDATED:   BY LAURA THOMAS

Elizabeth George gave a powerful performance as the harassed single mum Jennifer in David Hendon’s Home Time. Movement and timing were well directed by Paula Chitty, but the play was overlong, both in real time and the narrative arc it covered. Tending toward melodrama, it was a tragic story, but without the cathartic kick of a tragedy. Nevertheless, a compelling and gripping tale well executed.

 

 

2017 

KENNETH BRANAGH AWARD - Director .  Home Time        October . NEW WRITING 

KINGS LANGLEY - Director / Designer . Lily and Bear       October.  MUSICAL

ABBEY THEATRE - Director/Designer. Lily and Bear      October .MUSICAL 

ARCOLA THEATRE. Director/Designer. Menotti. Sullivan        August. OPERA

REGIONAL TOUR.Designer . Sullivan’s HMS Pinafore/Pirates of Penzance         June . OPERA

MALTINGS ARTS THEATRE Director/Designer. Sondheim’s A Little Night Music.      May . MUSICAL

ARCOLA THEATRE. Director/Adapted. Lily and Bear by Lisa Stubbs. Lily and Bear.      April. MUSICAL

GBS STUDIO RADA. Director. Last Tango /The Fat Lady Sings- David Tristram.       April. PLAYS

ABBEY THEATRE. Designer. Gilbert and Sullivan’s Pirates of Penzance. SACO .       March. OPERA

ROYAL ALBERT HALL. Director / adapted. Lily and Bear by Lisa Stubbs. Lily and Bear.      Feb. MUSICAL

HOME TIME - Kenneth Branagh Award for New Wring . Home Time by David Hendon. Directed by Paula Chitty

‘A triumph ‘ Sardine publications

______________________________________________________________________

Sondheim’s A Little Night Music. - Maltings Arts Theatre. St Albans.

A Great Little Night Out …. Clever use of minimal props, pinpoint timing from performers and Paula’s clear vision of how it should be staged in such a small space. It was a revelation. - Even byte publication

2016

GBS RADA. Director/Designer, Tredinnick’s Up Pompeii. Partnership Theatre. Nov. PLAY

 ST LUKES’ CHELSEA Director. Purcell’s Dido and Aeneas. JLP Music Soc. Oct. OPERA

MALTINGS ARTS. Director/ Designer. Green Man by P Hale/K Walker.  irrational.Oct. PLAYS  

ARCOLA THEATRE. Director/Designer. Leoncavallo’s Pagliacci irrational. Aug. OPERA

ODNEY ESTATE.Director/Designer. Nesbit’s The Railway Children. Partnership Theatre. July. PLAY

CHILTERN OUTDOOR. Director/Designer. Shakespeare’s The Comedy of Errors. June.PLAY

            GORDON CRAIG.Design Judge. UK ROCK CHALLENGE. Feb DESIGN JUDGE

ARTS THEATRE.WESTEND.Director / Designer. Leoncavallo’s Pagliacci. Jan. OPERA

OXFORD TOUR.Director/Designer. Menotti’s Old Maid & the Thief. Opera Anywhere.            Various OPERA

★★★★

Leoncavallo’s Pagliacci – Arcola Grimeborn Festival . London

Directed and designed by Paula Chitty 30th August – 3rd September 2016

—–

2015 Feb Director/ Designer Three Wayfarers Opera Anywhere.
17-21st New opera Orchestra. Cast 15 Unicorn Theatre. Abingdon

‘The Three Wayfarers makes for splendid entertainment and is guaranteed to send the audience home with a smile. ‘Stephen Connock MBE Chairman Albion Records

Had a great time watching a new opera The Three Wayfarers at The Unicorn Theatre, Very enjoyable performance!Jane May

Loved John Whittaker’s new opera Three Wayfarers this evening – wonderful piece! Congrats on another great production. Fab cast . Special mention for excellent 13-year-old fiddler. Nicola Lisle

2015 

 

OXFORD TOUR - DIRECTOR AND DESIGNER - Menotti's The Old Maid and the Thief. Opera anywhere - OPERA

ENGLISH TOURING OPERA - Designer - Mighty Mega Stafford  Discover Centre. Nov. OPERA

MALTINGS ARTS . Director/Designer. Gay’s Beggars Opera - SACO. Oct. OPERA

MALTINGS ARTS. Producer. Frieda Loves Ya! byRebecca Kenny. Irrational. Sept- BURLESQUE.

GBS STUDIO . RADA . /BARN WELWYN.Director/Designer. Leigh’s Abigail’s Party Irrational.  Sept- PLAY

UNICORN THEATRE. OXFORD. Director/Designer. Whitikar's Three Wayfarers. Opera Anywhere. May OPERA

ST JAMES THEATRE. LONDON. Designer - Murder in space and time - Partnership. April. PLAY

WHITE BEAR, LONDON . Director/designer - Puccini /Menotti /Sullivan / Claire Dowie's  and Norland . Irrational theatre Jan . OPERA

 

2015 Jan Director/ Designer Puccini’s Gianni Schicchi White Bear Theatre.
6-17th Producer (Opera) Cast 10. Piano London2015 Jan Director/Designer Menotti’s The Telephone White Bear Theatre
6-17th Producer Sullivan’s Cox and Box London
(Opera /New writing) Norland’s CycleSmashes opera’s cosy convention with a laugh- London theatre Bubble

The entire performance was a complete delight, a cast of 10 accompanied by a young BBC
Piano finalist ensure a great success. John Manning. Herts Advertiser

‘Sublime singing, performed with gusto. It wraps Menotti’s The Telephone around Arthur Sullivan’s Cox and Box and a new play. First rate and compelling. It is well worth going along.’

2014 

 

 

KENNETH BRANNAGH AWARD – Director/designer. No Cure for The Horse Chestnuts by K Walker –Windsor Fringe. Oct PLAY

MALTINGS ARTS THEATRE - Producer. Claire Dowi's. H to He / John Lennon’s wearing a Skirt Irrational theatre/solo co prod. - Oct STAND UP

COLSTON HALL BRISTOLREGIONAL TOUR Director/designer.Gilbert and Sullivan's Jubliee Mikado. Opera Anywhere. 2012- 2015 Opera. Note the current Mikado for Opera Anywhere is directed and designed by someone else.

MALTINGS ARTS THEATRE – Producer. Evening of Opera Aria's and bite sized theatre- Irrational theatre. Sept. OPERAPLAYS

MALTINGS ARTS THEATRE – Director/designer. Flash and Bloo Hoo By Jane Fookes irrational theatre. May PLAYS

ABBEY THEATRE MAIN HOUSE – Designer.- Mozart's Cosi Fan Tutte - SACO - March OPERA

2014 June Designer / Director Gilbert and Sullivan’s Opera Anywhere.
Costumes.(Opera) The Mikado orchestra/piano regional Tour

Review. ‘Entertaining production, plenty to enjoy with a cast of mainly young
Professional delivering Gilbert’s humour with evident relish.’

—–

2014 March Designer Mozart’s Cosi Fan Tutte St Albans Chamber Opera
(opera) Abbey Theatre. Herts.
Review: Excellent set design by Paula Chitty – John Manning

2013 

 

 BARONS COURT THEATRE. LONDON .Director/Designer. Menotti’s The Telephone and Sullivan’s Cox and Box. OPERA

MALTINGS ARTS . Director. Designer. Bedford’s Pantomime- Cinderella and the Soul Sisters- PANTOMINE

REGIONAL TOUR . Disigner. Sullivan’s Pirates of Penzanse – Opera Anywhere. Various dates. OPERA

REGIONAL TOUR ,Director/Designer.  Gilbert and Sullivan's The Mikado Varoius. OPERA

MALTINGS ARTS. Director/Designer. Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet, irrational . May .SHAKESPEARE.

GBS STUDIO . RADA. Alan Acyborn’s Improbable fiction . JLP April. PLAY

ABBEY THEATRE MAIN HOUSE – Director.designer. Bizet’s Carmen. SACO. March. OPERA

2013 Nov Director/ (Musical pantomime)Bedford’s Cinderella and irrational theatre
Designer and costumes The Soul Sisters. The Maltings Theatre.Review: ‘It was hilarious. Performed by an enthusiastic cast with a penchant for quick changes. Paula Chitty directed with all the originality an audience have come to expect’—–

2013 May Director/ Designer Romeo and Juliet irrational theatre
9th – 19th producer/ Costumes Shakespeare Maltings Theatre. St Albans

Review’One of the best interpretations of the play I have ever seen and I have seen a few…
not only was it quirky, but it had a freshness that local theatre often lacks’

—–

2013 April Director (Play) Improbable Fiction
9 – 13th Designer Alan Ayckbourn GBS STUDIO Rada. London

Review ‘Clear vision of director Paula Chitty’ ‘showing truth and daring – a convincing fiction’

—–

2013 March Director/Designer Carmen – Bizet St Albans Chamber Opera
18 – 24rd (opera) cast 30 + orchestra

Review ‘A very high standard of production’

2012 

 

 

REGIONAL TOUR – Directir/designer - Sullivan’s The Mikado Opera Anywhere. Various Dates. - OPERA

MALTINGS ARTS THEATRE – Director/designer.Sullivan’s Trial By Jury, SACO . Oct. OPERA

KENNETH BRANAGH AWARD . Director/Designer. Sethoy’s Scrambled Eggs. Windsor frnge. Oct. PLAYS

NORDON ARTS. Designer. Charlotte Jones’ Humble Boy. - JLP .  April. PLAY

2012 Oct Director (Opera) Trial by Jury St Albans Chamber Opera
Designer Gilbert and Sullivan Maltings Theatre. HertsReview:’Probably the most amusing production of the show I have ever seen. Paula Chitty demonstrated with minimal resources and enthusiastic performers a really impressive show can be presented’—–

2012 June Director (Opera) The Mikado Opera Anywhere, Regional Tour
Tour Designer/Costumes Gilbert and Sullivan

Review: ‘Delightful performance with really excellent singing!’

2011 

 

 MALTIINGS ARTS . Director/Designer. Shakespeare’s The Comedy of Errors. OVO . Sept. Shakespeare.

ROYAL OPERA HOUSE . Assistant director to Richard Jones on Puccini's Il Trittico June - Sept OPERA.

ST SAVIOUR'S CHURCH. Director/Designer. Lampe’s Dragon of Wantley. SACO - May. OPERA

ABBEY THEATRE MAIN HOUSE. Designer.  Sullivan’s Yeoman of the Guard.- SACO - March. OPERA

ROYAL OPERA HOUSE - Assistant director/observer to Richard Jones on Turnages' Anna Nicole -  Jan. OPERA

2011 Nov Director (Play) The Comedy of Errors irrational theatre
24th – 3rd Dec Designer and costumes Shakespeare Maltings Theatre. HertsReview The Comedy of Errors. An Errors inspired by Fawlty Towers eh? What an excellent idea!
a wonderful homage to a classic show. Really fun and very accessible Shakespeare. Paula Chitty made an inspired choice by setting it in Budleigh Salterton on the English Riviera with a trio of excellent singers’—–

2011 June Director (Opera) Dragon of Wantley-Lampe St Albans Chamber Opera

Review. ‘Dragon roars for Chamber show’

2010 

 

 

PUDDING LANE . Co Director/designer ,Chekov’s Three Sister’s . Ovo Thatre. PLAY

MALTINGS ARTS. Director/designer Pasatieri La Divina - SACO - Oct OPERA

NORDEN ARTS . Maidenhead. Designer. Auburn’s Proof - JLP . April. PLAY

ABBEY THEATRE MAIN HOUSE. Designer. Rossini’s Elixir of Love. SACO - March. OPERA

ABBEY THEATRE STUDIO . Director/Designer. O’Neil’s Hughie - Irrational . PLAY

ABBEY THEATRE MAIN HOUSE . Designer. Babe the sheep pig. Jan.  PLAY

2010 Oct Designer (Play) Proof Norden Arts Theatre
19-23rd David Auburn MaidenheadReview: ‘Paula Chitty did a great job with the set design, the purpose build back of a house and porch was well designed and presented’—–

2009 May Designer (Play) Hughie irrational theatre
19-23rd co Director Eugene O’Neil Abbey Theatre Studio. St Albans.
Review: ‘A very compelling production by irrational theatre…a bijou production by any standard