UVU Theatre Presents Famously Comic Opera ‘The Mikado’
March 28, 2013
For Immediate Release
In April, Utah Valley University’s Department of Theatrical Arts for Stage & Screen will present 11 performances of Gilbert and Sullivan’s light-hearted opera “The Mikado” at the Noorda Theatre.
Performances will run April 11-13 and 15-20 at 7:30 p.m., with 2 p.m. matinees on Saturdays. Tickets are available at the School of the Arts Box Office at the Noorda Theatre, at Campus Connection in the Sorensen Student Center, by calling 801-863-PLAY (7529), or online at uvu.edu/arts.
“The Mikado” has long been hailed as one of the silliest of all Gilbert and Sullivan’s combined works of comic music, but audiences can expect new heights of humor and absurdity with this unique interpretation by UVU’s own James Arrington and Rob Moffat.
“In short we are doing the entire story with only nine actors,” said Arrington, who directs this production. “The men play women, the women play men, and in one case a character is played by a mannequin. In other words, there’s no chorus, no cast of 30 dancing about the stage. Everyone has at least three jobs, and it really keeps our actors on their toes … in Japanese sandals!”
The plot focuses on Nanki-Poo, son of the Emperor of Japan, who falls in love with Yum-Yum, who is betrothed to Ko-Ko, who is condemned to die for committing the capital crime of flirting. While that may seem a bit grim, the resulting high jinks created by the laughable situation throws the town into a panic for fear it will be demoted “to the rank of a village,” and Ko-Ko uses every trick in the book to prevent his own downfall.
“This is far from a simple redo,” Arrington said. “We’ve completely re-imagined the play into something I’ve never dared try to do before. We are terrified, optimistic, excited and fascinated.”
With beautiful costumes, unique makeup and a set by national prize-winning designer Stephen Purdy, attendees can expect to see “The Mikado” as they’ve never seen it before, or probably ever will again.
The witty lyrics and beautiful settings of the original production remain, but UVU’s unique take on a plot full of political maneuverings, a lovers’ triangle and beheadings creates a play that will leave audiences laughing themselves silly and saying, “Nothing could possibly be more satisfactory.”