Over $90,000 raised
BY VANESSA COMTOIS Emperor of Japan, The Mikado, has passed a law that every month someone must be killed. In order to save each other, the citizens of Japan elect the next person in line to be sentenced to his death, Ko-Ko, as Lord High Executioner. Now no one can be murdered until Ko-Ko takes his own life.
This year’s Lakeshore Light Opera (LLO) production is, like those in years past,
anything but conventional. “It’s so silly and just a wonderful romp,” said stage director Jonathan Curzi.
The company is devoted to producing Gilbert and Sullivan operettas and, since 1955, has performed all but two of them. LLO produces 10 Gilbert and Sullivan operettas on a rotation cycle. The last time The Mikado was performed by the company was in 1999. Curzi does reassure ticket buyers, however, that the current production bears little resemblance to its previous showing. While the scenery remains the same, there is a new interpretation of the script, new costume design and makeup, and new choreography.
The play’s cast members are volunteers “from all walks of life,” Curzi said. Soon after auditions, rehearsals for the play began as early as September. Cast members met twice a week for two or three hours at a time. This year, The Mikado is made up of 30 cast members, including the chorus, 18 musicians, and six backstage hands. Running the show along with Curzi are assistant director Heather Hanks, choreographer Christina Boyarchuk, and musical director Marian Siminski. “Opera is this wonderful machine and everybody is a gear moving (to make the machine run),” Curzi said. “Fashion, architecture, dancing, singing — it’s all a wonderful montage.”
The Mikado runs March 7-10 with showings every evening at 8 p.m. at John Rennie Theatre in Pointe Claire. March 10 also includes a matinée at 2 p.m. All proceeds from ticket sales are donated to the Lakeshore General Hospital Foundation.
For more information or tickets, call 514-804-4900 or check www.llo.org.