Fancy a week in Devon, putting on a Musical, this summer? We are thrilled to announce our Summer Tour of Carousel!
As you may know, Imperial Productions began as the Operatic Society of Imperial College, and began taking shows to Devon in 1968. Though the company and the college have parted ways, the custom is maintained, and we have a great following in the West Country.
The company welcomes all members, who include professionals, others with many years of experience, and novices, but it has a tradition of all these people working hard to pull together a good production, and having a really great time in Devon. No one is paid, and everyone helps out.
Many people rent cottages or go for B&Bs for the 9-day tour, but the company also rents a scout hut, where company members can stay for free (basic facilities, but it has a kitchen and a shower, and lots of space inside or out for campers). There is a friendly atmosphere, and those who have been ‘on tour’ to Budleigh Salterton tend to return for more.
We need a great cast of singing actors, including a strong ensemble/chorus, to bring this wonderful show to Devon. In addition, we would like to expand our team to include a technical manager, band members, a set build team, a wardrobe team, and a front of house team, so please spread the word around, and get in touch if any of these additional roles would be of interest to you/friends/partners.
Kirsty Bennett (Director)
Mary Jane Harding Scott (Musical Director)
LJ Anstice Pim (Choreographer)
Thomas Ward (Assistant Director)
Richard Rodgers once wrote that of all the musicals he wrote, Carousel was his personal favourite. This American classic features some of Rodgers and Hammerstein’s most iconic pieces, including “If I Loved You”, “Mister Snow”, “June is Bustin Out All Over” and the iconic “You’ll Never Walk Alone.” Carousel was Rodgers and Hammerstein’s second collaboration, and was adapted from Ferenc Molnar’s 1909 play Liliom. They transferred the Budapest setting of Liliom to the New England coastline, where Carousel takes place. The story tells of roguish carnival barker Billy Bigelow and mill worker Julie Jordan, both loners, who meet and fall in love. Their marriage ends up costing both their jobs, and things go downhill from there. Billy’s desperation makes him violent against those he loves most, and drives him to commit crimes in order to provide for his family. When Billy falls in with con-man Jigger Craigin, he ends up getting caught in the midst of an armed robbery and takes his own life. Billy is allowed to return to earth for one day fifteen years later, and he encounters the daughter he never knew. Louise is a lonely, friendless teenager, her father’s reputation having haunted her throughout her young life. Yet Billy is able to instill in both the child and her mother a sense of hope. Voted the best musical of the 20th century by Time Magazine, Rodger’s and Hammerstein’s Carousel is the classic American musical, spanning heaven and earth in its exploration of human frailty, resilience, and the power of forgiveness.
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