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Fall 1989: Utopia, Limited

Notes

As Utopia Ltd is unfamiliar to almost everyone, we wish to alert audiences to two scenes in Act II that may have you wondering, "Is this in the original script?" The first of these is the cabinet meeting King Paramount holds with the Flowers of Progress, and the answer is Yes, this is performed exactly as Gilbert and Sullivan wrote it, down to the instrumentation. The second is the presentation scene immediately following, and the answer is No, this is not in the script, at least not in this form.

As written and performed in 1893, the presentation scene consisted of nothing more than a lengthy (albeit stunningly costumed) reenactment of a genuine "drawing room" at Buckingham Palace. Utopia was by far the most expensive of the Savoy productions, and much of the money went to deck the women in splendid gowns for this scene. There was no dialogue, and the point of it all escapes modern audiences, but Victorians took no end of delight in such stuff. (In fact, we latter day Yanks have shown similar predilections: one thinks of a comparable costume parade in Camelot.) But for an Off Monroe production such ornamental whizbangs are out of the question, and so, rather than cut the presentation scene entirely, we have chosen to recast it in a slightly shorter and less reserved form.

Because Utopia is so rarely presented, there are few traditional performance practices to follow. It is very long and lends itself to pruning, but please be assured that the cuts we've made are not responsible for some quirks of plot you may notice; these are in the original.

And finally, all Rochesterians are proud to note that George Eastman's product and slogan had gained sufficient international currency by 1893 to rate a reference in Gilbert and Sullivan's new operetta.


Director: Brian Smith
Music Director: Gordon Bastian
Choreography: Brian Smith
Dance Captain: Mary Zwierzynski-Slack
Producer: Bob Weeks


Cast

Phylla
Anne Virgil
Calynx, the Utopian Vice-Chamberlain
Bob Weeks
Salata
Barbara A. Dick
Melene
Mary Lynne Conti
Tarara, the Public Exploder
David Schafer
Scaphio, a Utopian Judge
Bill Hammond
Phantis, a Utopian Judge
Peter Scribner
King Paramount the First
Buck Stein
The Princess Nekaya
Sue McNiel
The Princess Kalyba
Nancy Terepka
The Lady Sophy, English Gouvernante
Pamela Good
The Princess Zara
Edie Stewart
Captain Fitzbattleaxe
Brad Gundlach
Sir Bailey Barre, Q.C., M.P.
Jimmie B Lobaugh
Lord Dramaleigh, a British Lord Chamberlain
Ron Herman
Mr. Blushington (of the County Council)
Alan Evans
Mr. Goldbury (a Company Promoter)
Byron Wilmot
Captain Sir Edward Corcoran, K.C.B.
Peter L. Zavon

Chorus

Ted Benedict, Terry Benedict, Rosemarie Berch, Donna M. Bigger, Bill Brewer, Mary Lynne Conti, Barbara A. Dick, Peter Dunbar, John A. Ejaife, Steve Ellis, Alan Evans, Julia Ferreira, Ron Herman, Debi Hirsch, Don Kolupski, Maryanne Lettis, John McCrank, David Raymond, Anne Virgil, Byron Wilmot, Scot Zaffora-Reeder, Mary Zwierzynski-Slack


Crew

House Managers
Maureen Barry, Christine Dettman, Molly Moore, Mary Ann Rouse
Set Designer
Brian Smith
Costume Manager
Sarah Freeman
Lighting Designer
David Smith
Photography
David Schafer

View Utopia, Limited Photos on Flickr

Off-Monroe Players, Inc.
P.O. Box 18722
Rochester, NY 14618
(585) 232–5570

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