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j * ?? * * * * *?*

Keith Manzie says there'll be a...

f^NEW LOOK IN

THE G&S SHOWS

YOU'LL hardly believe it, but the old Gilbert and Sullivan ? operas are going to take on quite a bit of glamor when [hey open at Her Majesty's in August

j For one thing, the scenes are going to be simplified and stream- lined.

: Silhouettes and drapes {fill be used instead bf the more detailed and massive sets of time-honored G. & S. production.

This change serves a double

purpose . in conforming to modern simplification of stage decor and (more important still) being, much easier to handle, and less costly, while the company is on tour.

And "glamor" will also be in- jected into thc shows through at- tractive and sprightly Jane Mar- tin, who is on her way from Eng- land to play the soubrette roles.

This Jane is quite a ghi. In London she's played every sort of

I DICK PRATT, as Mark Antony, and Noel Ferrier, as Julius Caesar, in Peter O'Shaughnessy's production ' of '?'Julius Caesar" in the Union Theatre, University ot Mel- bourne. The season ends today with a matinee and night performance of the play, which is presented hy the Tin

Alley Players.

stage. role from principal girl in pantomime and on through musical comedy to operettas and opera.

One of Jane's top parts has been that of Julie in Rogers and Ham- merstein's "Carousel" at Drury Lahe. Shirley Jones, who plays Julie in the Cinemascope version of the show (next into the Mel- bourne Regent), met Jane quite

recently in London; and as a re- v suit of the meeting 'Jane was in- vited to make a film test for 20th Century-Fox.

But the offer from J.C.W. to visit Australia and New Zealand with the Gilberts intervened - and Jane settled for the substance instead of the shadow play.

Jane Martin's already played in Alms. She's handled several juvenile parts in British pictures, and was in the Margaret Lock- wood film, "Jassy."

So doing! the bright bits in G. & S. should be just like a piece of cake for the animated Jane. The

local, theatre, i'm sure, will be all the brighter for her coming.

*

AFTER a scratchy start on what

seemed to be. a "sticky wicket," it now seems that the. 1956 G. & S. company" is going- to . be quite a strong team, and should dig in for a long innings.

English contralto Muriel Brun- skill (previously in Australia with the Fuller Opera Company and in concert tours) will obviously lend strength to . the shows in the feminine "heavy" roles previously played by Evelyn Gardiner.

Although grand opera has mostly been. her forte, Miss Brunskill is. quite familiar with the Savoy shows. She played in the British .film story of "Gilbert

and Sullivan."

Principal* soprano (as I pre- viously forecast)' will again be thc charming Helen Roberts, who sang the feminine leads in the last G. & S. tour. Her husband, Richard Walker, will produce the operas and share the baritone roles with that Savoy opera "regular" of many Australian seasons, Richard

Watson.

Biggest change in the company is that . Grahame Clifford takes over the comedy roles which have been played by Ivan Menzies since way back.

Clifford is an English jack-of-all trades of the theatre. He played in grand opera at Covent Garden in 1938, was principal comedian of the D'Oyley Carte Opera from 1939 to 1946, plaved in the film of "Tales' of Hoffmann" in 1951 in

. LUCY GALLANT (King's). . MARTY (Athenaeum).

. GUYS AND DOLLS (Metro,

Collins Street). . MFIFI (Savoy).

m A MAN CALED PETER (Plaza

revival).

9 VALUE FOR MONEY (Oáeon). . THE COURT JESTER (State).

. GRAHAME Clifford re- i places Ivan Menzies in the ¡ comedy parts in the 1956 ] Gilbert and Sullivan season, ¡ which opens at Her « Majesty's in August. He is > seen here as the Lord High j Chance/for in "Iolanthe." \

the dual roles Spalangani and Franz, appeared in an open-air performance of "Merrie England" In 1953, has beert teaching singing and dramatic art, has appeared on TV, and earlier this year was pro- ducing- shows for the Utopia Op- eratic Society at Lewisham.

Following: "The Gondoliers," the 1956 Gilbert and Sullivan Company will present "The Mikado," "The Yeomen of the Guard," "Iolanthe," and "The Pirates of Penzance" and "Trial by Jury." A return soasen will include "H.M.S. Pinafore," "Patience," and "Ruddlgore." -

T WAS seated in the publicity

offices at the Princess Theatre one afternoon this week when Mor- gan St. John (the exotic Lalume of "Kismet") appeared in the door- way balancing a large pie in her

hand.

"It's our great American dish pumpkin pie," she told me. "I sat up till 1.30 a.m. making five of them. Have a slice."

I did. It was delicious. But it didn't taste a bit like pumpkin.

More like . av.custard tart with. - something mofé interesting added.

"The pumpkin.'is just .the base of: ;the swéet," rsp<idi Morgan.. '.'You make it with' "lots of sugar and beaten-up eggs and spice.

"All the Americans who come here for the Olympic Games will be looking for pumpkin pie in Aus- tralian hotels and eating- houses," said Morgan St. John. "So it's about time the local chefs learned how to make them."

VOU must have heard of Arthur

Miller - he's Marilyn Monroe's boy friend.

But he also writes plays. Like "Death of a Salesman," fer in-

stance.

Miller hts also managed to tear his thoughts away from Marilyn long* enough to write a show called "Thc Crucible." It's being- given its Australian premiere in the Union Theatre next Wednesday nicht (June ZO) by Ormond and Women's colleges dramatic club. Peter O'Shaughnessy will produce.

'THIS week Melbourne theatre has

gone mad with the Shakespeare. The Elizabethan Theatre Trust

opened at the Comedy with « "Twelfth Night" on Tuesday. On ¡ Wednesday the Tin Alley Players ¡ commenced a four-nights' season j of "Julius Caesar." (It concludes ¡ today, with matinee and . evening j performances.) j

And next week it seems likely j that Laurence Olivier's screen ver- ] sion of "Richard III" will go into ; the Athenaeum Theatre, with ! Claire Bloom. Sir John Gielgud, Sir ! Ralph Richardson, and so many other knights it sounds like a re-

make of "King Arthur." !

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