The Beggar's Opera

by John Gay and Dr Pepusch

directed by Philip de Grouchy

Performed at the

Maskers' Emsworth Road Studio


Monday 20th to Saturday 25th October 2008

Director's Notes

This piece, first staged in 1728, made history as the longest run -- 63 nights! -- on the English stage up to then. John Gay's play-with-songs was the experimental theatre of its day, and was the forerunner of many more such 'ballad operas' during the 18th century, in which the dialogue was interspersed with with appropriate short songs set to traditional or currently popular tunes. The society of its time is satirised in the play, where self-interest and greed are the only motivations of most of the characters, and where the behaviour of the ruling class is parodied by that of the criminal class. Our version of this 'Negate Pastoral' does not claim to be fully authentic; we have taken some liberties with the script, but have endeavoured to the vigour and rumbustiousness of the original. Our singing in places may be enthusiastic rather than operatic, but this is an entertainment to performed by singing actors, rather than acting singers, so we hope you will accept it in that spirit.

Philip de Grouchy

The Cast
The Governor of Newgate Jail Philip de Grouchy
The Governor's Lady Avril Woodward
The Beggar Graham Buchanan
MacHeath Lewis Brunt
Peachum Ian Wilson
Mrs Peachum Hazel Burrows
Filch Daniel Humphreys
Polly Ruth Kibble
Lucy Joanna Iacovou
Lockit David Jupp
Mat o'the Mint Ian Morley
Jemmy Twitcher Ken Hann
Ben Budge Graham Buchanan
Crook-fingered Jack Ken Spencer
Robin of Bagshot David Collis
Nimming Ned Paul Baker
Wat Dreary Ron Randall
Jenny Diver Hayley Cheesworth
Sukey Tawdry Rae Kibble
Mrs Coaxer Leah Barlow
Mrs Slammekin Moyra Allen
Dolly Trull Katy Mortimer
Mrs Vixen Hazel Burrows
Mrs Trapes Avril woodward
Guards Ken Hann, David Collis
For the Maskers
Director Philip de Grouchy
Musical Director Pam de Grouchy
Director's Assistant Avril Woodward
Accompanist Rosa Longman
Setting Roger Lockett, Ken Spencer
Properties Gill and Graham Buchanan, Adam Taussik, Ella Lockett
Costumes Christine Baker, Kay Hann
Lighting Clive Weeks, Jamie McCarthy
Stage and Production Manager Meri Mackney
Business Manager Sarah Russell
Artwork and Programme Anja McCloskey
Printing Geoff Wharam
Photography Clive Weeks
Box Office Christine Baker
Front of House Julia Jupp
Catering Jan Spiers


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Shirley's own LOCAL theatre!

Maskers Theatre Company
Off Emsworth Road
SO15 3LX

Registered Charity 900067

Established 1968

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