HMS PINAFORE Winchester Operatic Society Theatre Royal, Winchester 02nd May 2012 All aboard the Starship Pinafore for this lively, updated production of an old G&S favourite. Captained by Suzanne Hall (Director), with an out-of-this-world re-write by Nichola Paterson, extra-terrestrial lighting and effects by Rebecca Gregory and a celestial orchestra. In addition, all were kitted out in cosmic costumes and the static set worked well.

Principal performances were strong and the original characters were adapted to fit the futuristic setting, with flirtatious retro space-trader Buttercup (Penny Bullough) who sold herself to the commanding Captain Corcoran (Peter Barber). Jaded Josephine (Katie Hickson) paired well with under-dog Ralph Rackstraw (Dan Hickson), with a lovely duet. The thwarted Sir Joseph (Adrian Hickford), played lothario to a quartet of clones (not forgetting the cousins and sisters)…and the jealous, tri-corned Deadeye (Mike Palette) upended the proceedings. However the crew needed sharper drilling in the first act.

Winchester Operatic Society really soared to the heights of the universe with their vibrant adaptation.

Rebecca Case