Swaffham Bulbeck Summer Theatre

Cox & Box HMS Pinafore

Sergeant Bouncer, an old soldier, has a scheme to get double rent from a single room. By day he lets it to Mr. Box (a printer who is out all night) and by night to Mr. Cox (a hatter who works all day). Whenever either of them asks any awkward questions he sings at length about his days in the militia.

His plan works well until Mr. Cox is, unexpectedly, given a day’s holiday and the two lodgers meet. Left alone while Bouncer sorts out another room, they discover they share more than the same bed. Cox is engaged to the widow Penelope Ann Wiggins – a fate that Box escaped by pretending to commit suicide.

They try gambling Penelope Ann away until news arrives that she has been lost at sea and has left her fortune to her ‘intended’. They then both try to claim her for themselves. Another letter arrives – she has been found and will arrive any minute. Now they both try to disclaim her! However, she doesn’t appear personally, instead leaving a letter to inform them that she intends to marry a Mr. Knox! Relieved, Cox and Box swear eternal friendship and discover, curiously enough, that they are long-lost brothers…

ACT I
The Pinafore, a “saucy” beauty of a ship in Her Majesty’s navy is anchored in the harbour at Portsmouth. Its proud sailors are busy scrubbing the decks for the expected arrival of Sir Joseph Porter, K.C.B., Britain’s First Lord of the Admiralty. “Little Buttercup”, a bumboat woman who is “red and round and rosy” comes aboard to sell to the sailors her stock of “snuff and tobaccy and excellent jacky,” and other luxuries.

A handsome and accomplished sailor, Ralph, tells his messmates that he is in love with the Captain’s daughter, Josephine. Dick Deadeye, the embodiment of the ugly truth, reminds the starry-eyed seaman that Captain’s daughters don’t marry foremast hands! The Captain arrives to inspect his crew. The gentleman captain sings that he never uses foul language and is never sick at sea — well, “hardly ever.”

Josephine is sought in marriage by Sir Joseph, but it seems that she has no enthusiasm for a union with that cabinet minister — secretly, she is in love with a lowly sailor: Ralph. It also seems that Little Buttercup has a romantic interest in the Captain and harbours a secret about Ralph!

Finally, Sir Joseph arrives attended by his many “sisters and his cousins and his aunts,” among whom is his loyal but jealous cousin Hebe. He explains that he rose to the top post in the Navy by sticking close to his desk and never going to sea. He also encourages the Captain to request that his sailors follow an order with the phrase “if you please.” After all, his Lordship notes, “a British sailor is any man’s equal.” Indeed, he presents the crew with a song that he himself has composed to encourage “independence of thought and action in the lower branches” of the Navy. Sir Joseph and the Captain retire below decks to discuss the proposed marriage.

Ralph finds Josephine alone on deck and declares his love for her and his willingness to try to fit in with middle-class society. She rejects his proffered love, although his simple eloquence goes to her heart. She is a dutiful daughter and cannot forget the disparity in their ranks. But when Ralph threatens suicide, the lady relents and declares her love for him. With the crew and the sisters, cousins and aunts assisting, the lovers plot to elope that very night. Dick Deadeye warns the pair of the impropriety of their plan, but he is forced to retreat.

ACT II
Captain Corcoran
Captain Corcoran is alone on deck with his guitar and sings to the moon of his troubles. Little Buttercup comes to him and reveals her affection. He tells her that because of his rank he can never be more to her than a friend; but she hints darkly that a change is in store for him, and “things are seldom what they seem.”

Sir Joseph returns, complaining that Josephine does not favour his suit. The Captain comforts him by theorizing that she is dazzled by his lofty station and suggests that he plead his cause on the ground that “love levels all ranks”. When Josephine hears this argument, she considers how eloquently Sir Joseph has stated the justification for her to marry Ralph!

Dick Deadeye finds the Captain alone and reveals the planned elopement. He and the Captain lie in wait for the crew, who steal in “carefully on tip-toe.” The Captain confronts the elopers and is so exasperated that he actually swears a foul oath, “Damme!”, which is overheard by Sir Joseph Porter. Judging first and asking questions later, Sir Joseph orders the Captain to go to his cabin for this “ill-advised asperity.”

Upon inquiry, Sir Joseph finds out that Ralph and Josephine love one another and orders the “presumptuous” sailor to the brig. Affairs are interrupted by Little Buttercup, who discloses her long-concealed secret: As their foster mother, she had exchanged the Captain and Ralph while they were both babies.

Sir Joseph immediately sends for Ralph (who is now Captain) and the Captain (who is now a humble seaman). Since it is “out of the question” for Sir Joseph to marry the daughter of a mere sailor, his Lordship nobly consents to the marriage of Ralph and Josephine. The former Captain is now free to marry dear Little Buttercup, and Sir Joseph agrees to marry his longtime admirer, cousin Hebe. All ends with “joy and rapture unforseen,” for “he is an Englishman!” Hip, Hip, Horray!

Show Dates

  • 13th June 2018, 7:30pm
  • 14th June 2018, 7:30pm
  • 15th June 2018, 7:30pm
  • 16th June 2018, 2:30pm (matinee)
  • 16th June 2018, 7:30pm

Angela Roebuck

Musical Director

Angela Roebuck Close
Having previously cut her teeth for G&S by playing the clarinet for a handful shows in the orchestral pit in Watford and Wimbledon, Angela Roebuck has since been involved in all SBST’s 37 productions. Primarily she was the main repetiteur and then a clarinettist for the performances. There was an exception in 1991 for The Mikado when the availability of a second repetiteur meant she was able to experience being on stage in the chorus (and the glamour of a white face!).She became the third musical director for SBST in 1999 for The Sorcerer. Angela is very much looking forward to Princess Ida not just for its excellent music and working with the brilliant performers and musicians taking part this year, but also as it will mean she will have then directed all 14 of Gilbert and Sullivan’s Operettas in Swaffham Bulbeck.

Angela Roebuck

Musical Director

Lynne Bullen

Director (Cox & Box)

Lynne Bullen Close
Lynne has sung since she was 10. She has been Director and performer since SBST began except for the very first one in 1982. She has been involved with Shelford Opera group and also Cambridge Operatic Society, serving as Chair and committee member for both groups. She has also directed several G&S operas at Shelford. Lynne loves narrow boating and visiting her son in New Zealand. She hates people who don’t use their indicators whilst driving and who also drive with defective lights. She is an avid Sheffield United supporter.

Lynne Bullen

Director (Cox & Box)

Caille Peri

Director (HMS Pinafore)

Caille Peri Close
Caille has been involved with G&S since birth – it’s in her blood. One of her parent’s first dates was The Mikado so even before she was conceived – she’s never been without it!
Princess Ida is Caille’s 9th performance with SBST. Her favourite characters are the Fairy Queen, Angelina, Gianetta, and Princess Ida. Each has something of the dramatic, the ironic, and an aria that takes a piece of her soul with it.
Caille also performs with Lanwades Hall Players, Cantilena Singers, Pied Pipers, and Cambridge University G&S society.
Caille danced Swan Lake on Tap – a shortened version of the ballet – only the whole thing was tap dance à là ballet! She’s danced and done choreography as long as she’s performed singing on stage – since she was 4.
Her other interests include composing music, writing poetry in Italian and prose in English, photography, and she loves to escape into a book.

Caille Peri

Director (HMS Pinafore)

Cox & Box – Cast List

Cox

William Hale

William Hale Close
William inherited the G&S gene from his grandmother, and first appeared as 10th Gondolier in a student production in the Oxford Playhouse in 1988. He joined SBST in 2008 to play Leonard Meryll in The Yeomen of the Guard, and has appeared in every show bar one since then in tenor or baritone roles.
William also performs with Pied Pipers and Cambridge Operatic Society (of which he is currently Secretary) in Cambridge, and sings with choirs of all shapes and sizes all over the country.
His ultimate G&S ambition is to appear as Box (or Cox) in Sullivan’s first (and, he thinks, best) operetta, Cox and Box.

Cox

William Hale

Box

Tim Winn

Tim Winn Close
Tim has been involved with amateur groups in and around Cambridge for a number of years. He has performed with SBST several times, most recently in 2015 as Luiz in The Gondoliers and as Strephon in Iolanthe back in 2012.
Tim has also performed in South Pacific (as Luther Billis), The Pirates of Penzance, The Mikado, and The Magic Flute with Cambridge Operatic Society and last summer he was seen in Cambridge Theatre Companies production of Spamalot at the ADC Theatre.
When not on stage, Tim can be often found photographing productions, having done production photography for Festival Players, Cambridge Operatic Society and Pied Pipers.
In real life Tim teaches Art & Art History at a local Sixth Form College.

Box

Tim Winn

Bouncer

Gerard Chadwick

Gerard Chadwick Close
Gerard has lived in Swaffham Bulbeck since 1980. He had a principal role in all our productions for the first 30 years. Since 2012 he has alternated between performing on stage and behind the bar. Our shows prompted a wider interest in singing and he has appeared in numerous operas from Monteverdi to Britten as well as concerts and choral works.
More recently he has been seen in the comedies and farces put on each year by the Swaffham Bulbeck St Mary’s Players.
Beyond amateur dramatics Gerard’s main interests are church bellringing (another form of noisy public performance) and restoring old houses. Plumbing is a particular delight (oh, the bliss when water comes out of the taps and nowhere else).
Gerard is survived by a wife and two children (both of whom have, for no reason clear to him, left home).

Bouncer

Gerard Chadwick

HMS Pinafore – Cast List

Captain Cocoran

William Hale

William Hale Close
William inherited the G&S gene from his grandmother, and first appeared as 10th Gondolier in a student production in the Oxford Playhouse in 1988. He joined SBST in 2008 to play Leonard Meryll in The Yeomen of the Guard, and has appeared in every show bar one since then in tenor or baritone roles.
William also performs with Pied Pipers and Cambridge Operatic Society (of which he is currently Secretary) in Cambridge, and sings with choirs of all shapes and sizes all over the country.
His ultimate G&S ambition is to appear as Box (or Cox) in Sullivan’s first (and, he thinks, best) operetta, Cox and Box.

Captain Cocoran

William Hale

Dick Deadeye

Geoff Reed

Geoff Reed Close
Geoff Reed was co-founder of SBST in 1981, having settled in Swaffham Bulbeck in 1981 to become a consultant after a peripatetic life as a civil engineer.His acting career began with a small part in ‘Merchant of Venice’ and then ‘The Gondoliers’ when an expat. in Zambia in 1971. He then continued with West Norfolk G&S Operatic Society in King’s Lynn, moving into directing with ‘Iolanthe’ with Dubai & Sharjah Singers in 1977. This continued with SBST, culminating with Ruddigore in 2013, having directed most of the operas, including ‘Utopia Ltd’ and one of his favourites ‘The Grand Duke’.He has also regularly performed in bass principal and chorus roles since 1980 at Cambridge Arts Theatre with CaOS, most recently in ‘Annie’ in 2017.His favourite character role is ‘Dick Deadeye’ in ‘HMS Pinafore’ who, despite being cast as a grumpy old spoiler, is the only sane person in the whole ship’s company!Geoff likes to be busy and social, his other main interest being church bell-ringing, which is both physically and mentally stimulating, all coupled with the odd beer afterwards of course.

Dick Deadeye

Geoff Reed

Josephine

Anna Murgatroyd

Josephine

Anna Murgatroyd

Rafe

Stephen Lawrence

Rafe

Stephen Lawrence

Bosun

Caille Peri

Caille Peri Close
Caille has been involved with G&S since birth – it’s in her blood. One of her parent’s first dates was The Mikado so even before she was conceived – she’s never been without it!
Princess Ida is Caille’s 9th performance with SBST. Her favourite characters are the Fairy Queen, Angelina, Gianetta, and Princess Ida. Each has something of the dramatic, the ironic, and an aria that takes a piece of her soul with it.
Caille also performs with Lanwades Hall Players, Cantilena Singers, Pied Pipers, and Cambridge University G&S society.
Caille danced Swan Lake on Tap – a shortened version of the ballet – only the whole thing was tap dance à là ballet! She’s danced and done choreography as long as she’s performed singing on stage – since she was 4.
Her other interests include composing music, writing poetry in Italian and prose in English, photography, and she loves to escape into a book.

Bosun

Caille Peri

Buttercup

Helen Bryant

Helen Bryant Close
Helen has been involved with G&S for 14 years; she started in 2003 with HMS Pinafore. This is her second show with SBST. Her favourite G&S character is Phoebe in Yeoman of the Guard. She’s feisty and has some wonderful things to sing.
Helen has regularly performed with Peak Opera at the annual International G&S Festival. This year she will be doing Pirates. She will also be performing with Coventry G&S Society – HMS Pinafore; STAMPS in Solihull – Iolanthe (Leila) and My Fair Lady; SMASH in Solihull – Guys and Dolls (Adelaide) and Peter Pan (Mrs. Darling). She has previously performed with St Andrews G&S Society in Monkseaton.
Her other hobbies include cross stitch and gin drinking. She likes Narnia, to a slightly obsessive degree. In fact she wishes she lived there (during the Golden Age). She dislikes snakes because they’re evil.

Buttercup

Helen Bryant

Sir Joseph Porter

Øistein Andersen

Sir Joseph Porter

Øistein Andersen

Carpenter

Steve Aronson

Steve Aronson Close
Steve first started with SBST in 2012 in the chorus of Iolanthe although he had to miss the performances due to the untimely passing away of his father. Since then he has played the Duke in Patience and Francesco in Gondoliers.
He has also performed with Girton Operatic as Richard Dauntless in Ruddigore, Alexis in The Sorcerer and recently once more as the Duke in Patience. The latter is his favourite role as he is so outrageous and gets to say and do things he would never consider in real life. Steven also sings with Cantilena Choir and Kol Echad, which specialises in Jewish music.
His other hobbies include karate, scuba diving, cooking, travel and he speaks seven languages.
He is a chiropractor in his day job using a gentle method to treat both humans and animals with pain anywhere in the body.

Carpenter

Steve Aronson

Hebe

Sally Goldsmith

Sally Goldsmith Close
Sally caught the G&S bug at the early age of 14 in school productions and it never went away; being followed by performances with Ipswich G&S, Framlingham Choral Society, BSEAODS in Bury St Edmunds and now SBST – where she has sung for the last 3 years. Her favourite character is usually the one she’s playing currently – but she has a sneaking feeling the tenors always get the best songs. When not singing or acting, Sally enjoys cycling, walking, sailing, reading and painting (badly). She is a frustrated dog owner – with the personal ambition of finding a scruffy mutt to rescue and rehome as soon as possible.
She likes dry humour, dry martini, and dry balmy days on the coast.
She dislikes camping, commuting and other drivers who forget what their indicators are for.

Hebe

Sally Goldsmith