The Yeomen of the Guard (2022) - BATS Review

The Yeomen of the Guard

Author: Paul Cohen

Gilbert and Sullivan's Yeomen of the Guard tells the tail of Fairfax who is to be executed, falsely
accused of sorcery by a family member who is keen to receive an inheritance. Add in a lovesick
maiden, a deluded suitor, an energetic jester and a families plot to deceive, and you have the perfect
mix for a G&S classic.
New Rosemere are unequalled in the Bolton area for their aptitude in presenting top quality
operetta and this production was no exception. Stunning from start to finish, this production had it
all. Tremendous set, an array of wonderful costumes, fabulous orchestra, and a talented cast with a
wide-ranging demographic.
From the opening melos, musical director, Paul Stanley presents a note perfect orchestra who pay
homage to the tuneful score providing a sublime backing to the vocal dexterity from the entire cast.
The score is packed full of delightful solo', duets, trio's, quartets and ensemble numbers, each
executed with style.
Hannah Carolan delights as Phoebe Meryl as she rejects the advances of Shadbolt, played with the
right amount of brashness by Mile Nash, in favour of her unrequited love for Fairfax. Hannah is a
natural on stage and offers a refined demeanour and elegant stance, befitting of the character. David
Griffith as Fairfax turns in yet another top-notch performance as he goes along with the rouse of
being executed whilst secretly being married to a stranger. Strong vocals and a pleasing stage
presence, David breezes his way though.
Enter jester, Jack Point and his fellow strolling player, Elsie Maynard. Eleanor Molly's enchanting
vocals are ever present from her first entrance, as she entertains with her jester, little knowing she
will meet her suitor by default, much to the dismay of Phoebe. Providing a breath of fresh air, in
terms of an energetic and engaging performance, Jonathan Allen is outstanding. Coming through the
ranks of BCMCS Youth Theatre he is branching out to adult societies and what a catch. Amazing
vocals and a confidence many would be envious of. A great performance.
Providing the obligatory comic twist, Heather Nicholas never disappoints and as Dame Carruthers
she makes her play for Sergeant Meryl in her own inimitable way. Due to Illness, the original actor
playing Sergeant Meryl had to leave the production, and at very short notice (2 days) Ken Rees
agreed to step in a play the part, and what a cracking job he did too. Word and note perfect, this
flawless performance was a joy to watch. Well done, Ken.
With principal support from Oliver Bird, Paul Green, Keith Shatwell, Steve Brennan and Amy Bell
backed by a super ensemble, this production certainly confirmed that New Rosemere are back and
raring to go in their continuation of presenting such high standard G&S. Director Hannah Carolan has
yet again presented a gem and the cast, company and crew should take a well-deserved bow for
their endeavours.