West Norfolk G&S Society starts rehearsals for Yeomen of the Guard

Michael Hankinson is West Norfolk G&S Society's new musical director and is pictured here with the Royal Philarmonic Orchestra in London
Michael Hankinson is West Norfolk G&S Society's new musical director and is pictured here with the Royal Philarmonic Orchestra in London
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Following on from the enormous success of January’s show, The Pirates of Penzance, West Norfolk G&S Society has started rehearsals for its 2016 production of The Yeomen of the Guard.

This will be staged at Lynn Arts Centre next February in the innovative, professional hands of director Andrew Nicklin, who has been responsible for the long run of successful performances.

The society is also very pleased to welcome a new musical director in Michael Hankinson, who has recently returned to England and has set up King’s Lynn Sinfonia as a community orchestra.

He studied at Trinity College of Music and in 1970 moved to South Africa where he revived the Durban Philharmonic, was resident conductor for State Theatre in Pretoria and composer and conductor to the Johannesburg Philharmonic Orchestra and principal conductor to the Cape Town Ballet.

Michael has also conducted the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra and he has also made a number of recordings.

Lynn Sinfonia will be the orchestra for Yeomen and will be presenting a concert of organ concertos at King’s Lynn Minster on Saturday, October 10.

Ros Ridley, the society secretary, says that rehearsals for Yeoman of the Guard are on Thursdays, from 7.15pm, and are held at North Wootton Village Hall. She added: “The society would love to see lots more young people.

“Whenever we have teenagers in the shows they really get caught up in the magic but then disappear off into further education; if you enjoy singing and acting then come along and find out what it is all about.

“G&S is musical comedy and Yeomen has funny moments in plenty and some lovely music. The society is looking particularly for tenors and altos but all singers are welcome.”

There are several lead parts to audition for on Sunday, October 11; these auditions are ‘open’ to all – non-members, new members, old members, and for more information contact Ros on 01553 674715 or visit the society’s website www.wngsos.weebly.com.

New members would be most welcome to join the society, particularly as the show, unsurprisingly, needs a large chorus of Yeomen.

The production also requires a strong chorus of men and ladies as townsfolk and there are opportunities for principal roles in the show.

Earlier this year The Pirates of Penzance played to full houses on three nights of the run with enthusiastic audiences, while the group’s previous show, The Sorcerer, won the society a NODA award for Best Musical and Best Overall Production.

The group went all out to get as much publicity as they could for Pirates and continued with their business/charity twinning project, raising £4,052 which was shared by five charities and it is intended to continue this project for Yeomen.

The show will be staged from Wednesday, February 3, to Saturday, February 6.