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Folk and Blues
Gulliver's Travels
by Chris Chambers and Andy Rapps
The Mitre Theatre, Croydon & Minack Theatre
July & August 2008
Director:  Julia Ascott
Choreographer: Helen Harman
Musical Director: Andy Rapps

Please use THIS LINK to view the photographs

The Mitre Players certainly rank among the very best of local drama societies: they have many talented members and just keep on raising the bar when it comes to new challenges.


This new musical adaptation of Jonathan Swift's classic satire is by Mitre members Andy Rapps (music and musical director) and Chris Chambers (book, lyrics and playing the hero).


Julia Ascott has directed with some pleasing choreography by Helen Harman.


A touring party of more than 100 will take the show down to the cliff-top Minack Theatre in Cornwall in August. They -and Croydon - can be proud of the enterprise. Gulliver and his traveling companions are living proof that we are not just about chavs, violence and crime.


It's a huge show, creatively presented and performed with a huge ensemble spirit.

The designers and special effects team (Andy Thompson!) have worked miracles. Costumes are a visual feast - especially for the Lilliputians in vibrant red , and the Laputa brainboxes in blue and silver, with some amazing headgear. There are lots of excellent giant props (apples, wasps etc) but the way the show has been conceived makes it easy for the audiences to understand the perspective of when Gulliver is with the Lilliputians or the giants.


Chris Chambers is a strong prop for the rest of the company as Gulliver himself and there are dozens of fine supporting performances. Nicky Chambers (Chris's real-life wife) plays Mary and gives us a heart-felt One Last Time. Helen O'Gorman is the delightfully humane Queen Giant, Karen Rapps the very opposite as the unpleasant Empress of Lilliput who gets a deserved drenching in one of the funniest scenes.


David Elder is in fine voice as the ship's captain who acts as confidante to Gulliver, Megan Harries-Rees portrays the spirit of Gaia with complete charm and there are notable contributions from Paul Longhurst, Fraser Macdonald, Cat Longhurst and Ian Brown - most taking several roles.


My favourite was Tamsin Reeve's memorably majestic and wise Sorrel Nag the horse with such well-observed equine movement.


Gulliver's Travels was one of the best amateur shows I've seen lately - if ever. Cornwall? It wouldn't be out of place in the West End!


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