Well-known Loughborough performer Kieran Sutcliffe came to the rescue of Christchurch G&S Society to ensure that the show would go on! A member of the cast for their production of Ruddigore had to pull out early in the year but Kieran stepped into their shoes to play the part of Richard Dauntless. Director, Richard Perkins said “It is always a worrying time when you need to cast a part at short notice but we were delighted when Kieran agreed to help us out. It was the first G&S show that he had ever appeared in and he proved to be a real asset to the group and quickly learned the part”.
Ruddigore (also known as The Witch’s Curse) tells the tale of the Baronet of Ruddigore. Following the curse of a witch, the holder of this title has to commit a crime every day or die in inconceivable agony. Sir Ruthven Murgatroyd, the real Baronet of Ruddigore, is disguised as a young farmer Robin Oakapple in order to avoid this fate, leaving his brother Sir Despard to assume the title. Robin is in love with Rose Maybud but he is too shy to declare his affections so enlists the help of his sea-faring foster brother Richard Dauntless. Richard takes a fancy to Rose himself but eventually Robin and Rose are brought together. Just as Robin is preparing to marry Rose, his true identity is revealed and he is forced to take up his title as Sir Ruthven, losing his bride in the process. Sir Ruthven is left to find a way of satisfying his ancestors – and the curse – while continuing to live a blameless life.
Alongside Kieran was Allister Jordan and Rachel Fitzpatrick as Robin Oakapple/Sir Ruthven Murgatroyd and Rose Maybud respectively and Peter Bateman and Marilyn Ashwell took on their first roles with the group as Sir Roderic and Dame Hannah.Cheryl Perkins as Mad Margaret, Dave Stapleton as Sir Despard, Len Dobson as Sir Adam, Valerie Hart as Zorah and Emma Brown as Ruth completed the cast.