The Mikado 1989

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The Mikado was the 17th show performed by the society. It was performed in Central Hall on 16th-18th February 1989. Tickets were £3.50 and £3, or £2.50 and £2 for concessions.

The chair was Daniel Jenkins.




Julie Leydon

Musical Director
Sue Shave


The Mikado - James Merryweather
Nanki-Poo - Ashley Wilson
Ko-Ko - David Pond
Pooh-Bah - Paul Jackson
Pish-Tush - Wayne Holt
Yum-Yum - Sarah Branson
Pitti-Sing - Anna Reid
Peep-Bo - Kate Currey
Katisha - Geraldine Darlington

Chorus of Schoolgirls
Liz Allen
Catherine Anderson
Wendy Beale
Michele Beard
Julie Branson
Helen Briggs
Louise Brown
Rachel Brown
Deborah Francis
Margaret Frisby
Paula Gentil
Susannah Gort
Jessica Helliwell
Claire Howarth
Alison Hulford
Helen Johnson
Lynda Johnson
Maureen King
Charlotte Moody
Becky Nicholson
Alison Nock
Judy Sutherland
Alison Tippett
Lisa Whanstall
Alisa White
Julie Winkless

Nobles, Guards and Coolies
Simon Bartlett
Tom Duffy
John Foweraker
James Geldard
Don Goodeve
Tony Griffiths
Keith Hall
Alistair Joliffe
Douglas Jones
Will Sclater
Chris Terry
Bruce Walton
Andy Wrigglesworth

Production Team

Production Manager - David Pumfrey
Production Manager's Assistant - Ian Wesley
Lighting Engineer - Martin Atkins
Sound Engineers - Pete Ball, Adam Guest
Set Design - David Pumfrey
Stage Manager - David Hudson
Stage Crew - Emma Boger, Alisa Carter-Waller, Andrew Dunn, Juliet Fox, Jane Gardner, Don Goodeve, Janet Goss, Alison Hulford, Rupert Hoare, Daniel Jenkins, Lynda Johnson, Charlotte Moody, Simon Moore, Lynda Richardson, Joan Smith, Nigel Wareing
Front of House - Derek Parsons, Ken Pratt, Stephen Purbrick, Ken Saunderson, Joan Smith, Joanne Tyszka
Repetiteurs - Lynda Richardson, Daniel Jenkins
Publicity & Programme - Martin Atkins, James Geldard, Don Goodeve
Poster Designer - James Geldard
Orchestra - Members of the VanBar Ensemble
Photography - David Pond, Ashley Wilson


President - Michael Green
Vice-President - Patrick Moore
Hon. Vice-President - Frank Banks

Chairman - Daniel Jenkins
Secretary - Helen Briggs
Treasurer - Alison Hulford
Costumes - Jessica Helliwell and Claire Howarth
Production - David Pumfrey
Press and Publicity - James Geldard and Don Goodeve
Music Rep - Lynda Richardson
Ordinary Members - Lynda Johnson (Charities), Simon Bartlett


Three little maids

Extended Programme


The Mikado of Japan- James Merryweather
James is from Cambridge and traces his happiest experiences back to this Society… As audience he nearly wet himself at the previous Mikado 79 (1979) [his words not mine- ed.] and subsequently turned into the Pirate King (1982), Jack Point (1983), and a memorable Private Willis (1987). He has also appeared on TV with Sir Gary Glitter…

Nanki-Poo- Ashley Wilson
Ashley works in the Biology Department, and first sung with the Society 14 years ago, in Iolanthe. You may remember his much-acclaimed performances of Ralph (Pinafore), Alexis (The Sorcerer) and Marco (The Gondoliers)… if you wish…

Ko-Ko- David Pond
David comes fromCrawley in Sussex, studies Maths/ Physics and is deeply enmeshed in the G&S Society. Despite this though, he has played many principal roles, including a highly debonair Duke of Plaza-Toro in last year's show, and Thomas Brown in our 1988 Guildhall concert, The Zoo. Last year was his 'annus mirabilis', as he was also Society Treasurer.

Pooh-Bah- Paul Jackson
Paul is a third-year Politics/Economics student from Northumberland and Alcuin College (in that order). This is his first appearance with the Society, and will also be his last, as he graduates in approximately six months' time. He has performed a version of Sir Joseph Porter (HMS Pinafore) and played Bobby van someone in the 1987 Alcuin Panto.

Pish-Tush- Wayne Holt
Wayne is not from Cambridge. After graduating from Southampton University, he looked north for fame and fortune, and came to York to train as a teacher. He underwent a change of mind, however, and- curiously for one who once sang in a Rhythm and Blues outfit called The Mystic Vegetarians- he currently works ar a well-known burger emporium in town.

Yum-Yum- Sarah Branson
Sarah is a first-year music student from Cambridge, and avows a great enjoyment of singing (which, I suppose, is probably just as well). She has appeared in multitudinous pantos and revues and, in Brighton, seven people once constituted her entire audience. We hope this experience will not be repeated tonight. Sarah would like to sing in operas when she leaves York.

Pitti-Sing- Anna Reid
Anna is a final-year Historian from (apparently) nowhere in particular. She modestly claims no previous experience of G&S, but has sung Carmina Burana in the Royal Albert Hall.

Peep-Bo- Kate Currey
Kate describes herself as a "bumpkin" from Devon. She is a first-year, and reads History/ History of Art. She likes cakes and appearing in melodramas. She is also an accomplished imitator of farmyard noises.

Katisha- Geraldine Darlington
Geraldine is well-known on campus for being a librarian and teaching Early Dance. At Cambridge (a town which is becoming something of a 'leitmotif' in this programme) she sang in works by Gluck and Berlioz with the Opera Society, and has also played Lucy in The Beggar's Opera.

The Directors

Julie Leydon works at the Centre For Cell and Tissue Research here at the University, and is a graduate of the History Department. Her début as a director was in the 1984 show, Ruddigore, and since then she has given the world a legendary HMS Pinafore (1985), and The Zoo (1988). She also appeared in the chorus of last year's show as a gondolier.

Musical Director
Sue Shave is a third-year History student and is well-known to be the most hard-working person on campus. She appeared in the chorus of our previous two shows, Iolanthe (1987) and The Gondoliers (1988), and was the Musical Director of last year's summer concert in The Guildhall. She also plays lots of hockey.

Commentary from Daniel Jenkins, Chair

From the outset, there was a determination to produce the best show the Society had ever performed, and in every quarter we had the experience and ability to do just that. Julie Leydon was back to direct (she had co-directed HMS Pinafore in 1985, the most acclaimed of out shows to date), and Sue Shave proved to be a marvellous MD, despite suffering from ME for much of the time. The chorus singing and orchestra were excellent- a tribute to Sue's endeavours.

On the technical side, Martin Atkins, the unsung hero of this society for the past 10 years, yet again did a thoroughly professional job from the lighting tower, and Dave Pumfrey did the impossible by making Central Hall actually look like a theatre. Using a huge amount of wood purchased cheaply from an undertakers, and reams of excess newsprint from the YEP he created not only a three-roof pagoda (interior and exterior) but also two Japanese bridges capable of withstanding the male chorus marching over them. Both the technical and artistic talents were backed by an excellent administration in the form of the Committee, headed by myself, and incorporating for the first time elected Press and Publicity officers (strictly for the brave). Which such talent, experience and resolve, how could we fail?

The membership as ever provided the material for an excellent cast. The vacancy for lead soprano (left by the departure of Sally Morris) was filled by first-year, Sarah Branson (Yum-Yum); both James Merryweather and Ashley Wilson were back (again), whilst David Pond, complete, with lisp, dealt with the demanding role of Ko-Ko superbly. But no doubt that the stars of the show were Wayne Holt with his Mancunian Pish-Tush and Geraldine Darlington, librarian extraordinaire, resplendent in her waterproofs and shorts, was a terrifying Katisha.

Rehearsals went very well- we even had a rehearsal schedule, which was a novelty after Gondoliers. Despite early worries that there were not going to be enough men, the chorus ended up being very well balanced. We had to work hard- there is no such thing as "second best" when Julie is directing, which was the main reason why the show was such a success. Such was the cast's determination to get things right that they even gave up their own time to get the movements spot on- how well I remember going through "Behold The Lord High Executioner" countless times to get everything perfect. Infuriating, but it all paid off.

Julie's direction was excellent- working on the principle that the audience will only notice 30% of what is presented to them, the show was stuffed full of good moments. The opening chorus was full of life and brought applause mid-song on the first night, and when the male chorus returned to welcome Ko-Ko, it got even better. The "little list" song was re-written (see Alternative G&S Lyrics), and was sung very well by Mr Pond, but it is the ad-lib on the last night that will stick in the memory (recorded for posterity on the audio tape). The entrance of the female chorus was aptly re-named by the stage crew as "Comes an underground train of little ladies" and, of course, will any of us ever forget the entrance of Katisha during Finale Act I on her bicycle? I don't think so.

I could go on forever, talking about the duck killing in "Tit Willow", the Titipu cheerleaders, the entrance of the Mikado, etc., etc. But I won't- just watch the video. The show was tight, enthusiastic, inspired and altogether very professionally done, just as we had planned. The best show ever? In the words of Noel Coward, "Ask the public, dear, just ask the public".

-Daniel Jenkins


The Mikado


Scenery, Lighting, Props £458.19
Costume & Make-Up- £344.23
Press & Publicity- £119.60
Programme Printing- £138.00
Ticket Printing- £85.34
Portering- £458.85
Orchestra- £220.00
Refreshment Purchases- £171.73
Production Sweatshirts- £518.28
Hire of Orchestral Scores- £130.00
Insurance- £85.30
Charities- £17.70
Photography- £70.20
Presents- £54.98
Flowers- £48.00
Total- £2920.40


Programme Advertising- £30.00
Programme Sales- £348.50
Ticket Sales- £3315.05
Refreshment Sales- £282.48
Sweatshirt Sales- £472.50
VC's Fund- £300.00
Sponsorship- £200.00
Total- £4948.53

Net profit of £2028.13

See Also:

The Mikado
Alternative G&S Lyrics
Julie Leydon
Sue Shave
Daniel Jenkins
Ashley Wilson

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