The Sorcerer ★★★★★ Wilton's Music Hall | June 11 - 15, 2024

The Sorcerer is the third of Gilbert and Sullivan's collaborations, and while no longer among the most popular of their works, it sets the precedent for many of their musical hallmarks. This latest production by the Charles Court Opera sets the highest standard for revival of the comic piece, wonderfully capturing Gilbert's satirical whimsy and Sullivan's challenging musical tropes. Based on Gilbert's story, An Elixir of Love, the tried-and-true plot deals with the series of mismatches that occur when the well-meaning Alexis, who believes that love and marriage are a panacea for all ills, employs a sorcerer and a love potion to overturn such barriers to happiness as age and class. The cast's broad acting perfectly matches the silliness of the tale, and they seem to be enjoying themselves as much as we are. John Savournin's direction is pitch-perfect to the tone of the fun, and Merry Holden's choreography is simply a delight. It seems almost unfair to single out any of the singing, but we particularly enjoyed Meriel Cunningham's rendition of "When he is here, I sigh with pleasure." Robin Bailey's duet with Ellie Neate, "With heart and with voice," was a definite highlight. Her "Thou hast the power thy vaunted love" was quite thrilling, and Matthew Kellett's "The air is charged with amatory numbers" was a real treat. Suffice it to say, Richard Suart's "My name is John Wellington Wells" was patter song perfection. This is a magical production from Charles Court Opera, and G&S fans shouldn't miss it!

Rated: ★★★★★

Reviewed by J.C.
Photo by Bill Knight

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